Friday, July 29, 2011


ELECTROCUTION ELOCUTION: Perhaps the biggest chuckle we got during the whole KIUC FERC vote debacle was the electric co-op's promise that, like any five year old who had lied and misbehaved, they would never do it again.

So the new era of openness and transparency that was promised after the vote failed, is upon us, right?

OK you can stop laughing now. Because as many have heard, after the second petition- one to try to force a re-vote due to the massive abuse of the voting process on KIUC's part- allegedly failed to garner enough signatures, they wouldn't even allow the petitioners to go over the petition and the membership list to ascertain the co-op's claim that many of the signatures were either duplicates or those of non-members.

But for a real eyeful of what the future of "member relations" is going to look like nothing can beat the "Fear and Loathing" style first hand account of Tuesday's KIUC Board meeting by Tek Nickerson- a regular guy who was outraged by many of the things he saw and got involved with the second petition.

So we hand over the rest of today's column to Tek's "report" on what went down (all SIC).



KIUC held their regularly scheduled Board meeting yesterday, Tuesday, 7.26.11. In response to the Members’ Second Petition and strong request for a verifiable count of signatures, KIUC simply issued a statement, defining a valid signature vs an invalid signature, plus a restatement of the count. They completely sidestepped the question about verification and that they might have a vested interest in protecting their own privacy how the determination was made on each signature.

I was the only one from the public signed in to talk, which was first on the agenda. Chairman Phil Tacbian said only members could talk and they could only talk in items on the agenda for three minutes.

I was called “to the stand.” I introduced myself as the point person on the second petition (to recall the election). The chairman said the petition was not on the agenda, and therefore COULD NOT BE DISCUSSED, so I could not talk. I thanked him and sat down, setting my precedence for respect.

(It was later explained to me that items are put on the agenda five days prior to the meeting. The agenda is posted on the KIUC web site. Since Tuesday was the sixth day after they received the petition, they CHOSE to avoid the issue by ignoring it on the agenda.)

I sat and listened as each person at the table gave their report. Consulting Counsel Proudfoot reported that he advised the Board how to proceed in response to the Second Petition.


“A point of order, Mr. Chairman! Mr Proudfoot just brought the subject of the Second Petition to the table! I may now speak on the subject!”

“No, you may not.”

This is the second time the Chair CHOSE to be dismissive.

Steve Raposo, Vice Chair and chairman of the Members Relations Committee, did not mention the Second Petition in his report. This was the third time that a KIUC elected representative chose to ignore their commitment to being open and reaching out to the public.

During a break, Consulting Counsel Proudfoot approached Director Jan TenBruggencarte and me. He said he was intending to tell Jan something to tell me. Finding me pleasant and inviting his advice, he said that I could ask the Chair to wave the rule and allow me to speak. This is encouraging, especially coming from him. We showed each other we were reasonable men and could work with each other.

Raposo’s Members Relations report centered on defining exactly what their course of action would be for outreach with the public. After ten minutes of discussion, it was still a quandary for them what it would look like.

Knowing that Raposo probably categorized me as an unreasonable obstructionist, I approached him with a suggestion. He was a bit taken aback, but he listened. I reminded him that history has taught us the approach that works under similar circumstances: the Dolley Madison solution of giving weekly parties for opposing political sides in the neutral territory of her home. I.e. Take the budget for talk-down “dog and pony shows” and apply it to island-wide regional parties, where the public is attracted first by the food and then by the opportunity to ask questions of their elected directors and opposing views one-on-one. Raposo listened. Time will tell if he is receptive to Dolley Madison’s ingeniously iconic solution, used in the White House to this day.

Raposo is one of the Gang of Five, who controls the direction that the board votes. (About the First Petition, he reportedly remarked that some people are only obstructionists. This is the third opportunity they passed up.)

At each opportunity ANY one of the directors could have interjected an objection…and did not.


During a break, Jan B. told me that until the elections give them FIVE votes aligned with our thinking, the board will continue to vote as they have. I characterize this as an archaic corporate/plantation-style mentality. The progeny of field hands have come of age to think on their own without the aid of the dumbing down from a political machine.

The three up for re-election are Ben Sullivan, Stu Burley and Steve Raposo. Jan explained that if we vote out Stu and Steve with strong candidates, we’ll have purged the Gang of Five with our own Five Alive.

This is the light at the end of the tunnel.

Meanwhile, sitting in the back of the room for a while was Free Flow Power representatives, Jason Hines and his assistant, Dawn. The chairman invited them to report an update on their progress. THIS WAS NOT ON THE AGENDA.

Then we all took a break before they went onto Executive session. I took the opportunity to complain to Ben Sullivan that FFP should not have been given the floor, since they weren’t on the Agenda. Ben said he let it go, because they wouldn’t be taking a vote. That’s contrary to their own rules! Thus, there is NO WAY in which the situation can be “corrected” if the Board can continue to “pick and choose” what it can do accordingly.

Will KIUC consider the “possibility” of a forum approach in getting to the root of the matter discussed in a neutral venue with an opportunity for both sides of the issue to be in the planning process of determining what should be discussed and how both sides can be fairly presented?

If you are a member of KIUC and wish to express your position on any of these matters, you are encouraged to contact the KIUC Board of Directors at


Fact Check said...

Boot Ben too.

He's not really bright enough for the job and has turned into an apologist for the machine.

Reminds me of the background music in the Southpark episode on the LDS church.

awolgov said...


awolgov said...

Ben just wants to be somebody. Needs to be heard. Never makes ANY sense but keeps on talking.
Steve has delusions of grandeur, thinks heʻs runnin with the big boys now FFP.
Doesnʻt even know what a clown they think all of them are, there to be used up and tossed out.
Tacbian...uh duh donʻt know what fo say.
Proudfoot so deficient could onlyget a salary working for mental midgets like them.
The employees walk around like somebody lifted a leg and pissed on their best dress...drawn a line of enemies in the community.
Bissel is the PROBLEM. Smart ass white dough boy doesnʻt know the damage he caused in this local community. Heʻs not too bright either but he figures since heʻs white heʻs smarter. W R O N G.
Bain is useless, a few squawks here and there but nothing of strength.
Jan needed a job.
Whoʻs the rest of them? Werenʻt even on the map until the petition came about.
All of em will be booted when FFP takes the money and runs.
Stupid is as stupid does.