HOTCHKISS – At its 75th annual membership meeting, Jim Elder, Olen Lund and incumbent candidate Tony Prendergast were elected to the Delta-Montrose Electric Association Board of Directors capping a heated election for the seat vacancies.
In the District 4 election, Elder received 3,762 votes, beating Erica Lewis Kennedy’s 2,495 votes. For the District 3 seat, Lund received 3,815 votes to best incumbent candidate Ed Marston, who received 2,652 votes.
For the South Region seat, Prendergast held onto his seat by receiving 3,491 votes over Kay Heinschel’s tally of 2,785.
“I was very pleased to win,” Prendergast said on Monday. “I have been on the board for six years and I feel like I have my feet on the ground and will continue to contribute. I have been very consistent about my agenda since I was first elected to the board six years ago, and that is to continue focusing on the core business at DMEA, including [putting an emphasis on] reliability, safety and competitive rates.”
Elder said he is assuming the position of board member without any particular agenda.
“I will be looking at all the issues facing DMEA and will try to bring my expertise, experience and knowledge. Our biggest challenge will be the rate increase coming from Tri-State [Generation and Transmission Association]. That will be just one of them. Going forward, we’ll be working on future projects, including fiber optics, renewable energy and new legislative rules that DMEA will have to deal with.
“We have a lot of issues on our plate,” he said.
The meeting, held in Hotchkiss, was well attended by DMEA’s power-purchasing members. It included a feature on DMEA’s linemen and their training, a historic look back at the beginning of electricity in the Uncompahgre Valley, and a presentation on coal methane harvesting by renewable energy analyst, Randy Udall.
Lund was unavailable for comment.