The Grays Harbor PUD Board of Commissioners have voted to appoint Jon Martin of Ocean Shores to fill the District Three seat vacated by the retirement of Russ Skolrood. Martin was one of six applicants for the seat and is tentatively scheduled to be sworn in by the board’s next meeting on August 2nd.
“We had a great group of candidates put their names in for the seat and in the end we got a great commissioner with a lot of experience in both the business and political areas that he has worked in,” said Board Vice President Arie Callaghan. “We’ve got a lot of work to do for the customers of the PUD and I’m looking forward to working with Jon on those projects.”
“I want to congratulate Jon on his appointment and thank all the applicants for being willing to get involved in the management of their PUD,” said Board Secretary Dave Timmons. “Jon brings so much experience to the board and I am really looking forward to working with him.”
A local businessman, Ocean Shores City Council President, and incoming Chairman of the Board of Greater Grays Harbor, Inc., Martin says he is eager for the opportunity to work with the PUD and be a voice for its customers.
“I’m so excited to get to work with the PUD staff and my fellow board members to be an advocate for public power in Grays Harbor,” said Martin. “I think the PUD has done a lot to make itself a valuable asset to the communities and customers it serves and I am looking forward to continuing that mission.”
As an appointee to an elected position, Martin’s seat will be up for election in November of 2022. If elected at that time, he will serve the remaining four years of the existing term in office.
The Grays Harbor Public Utility District is notifying customers in downtown Aberdeen of a planned power outage impacting businesses on two city blocks. The outage will begin at 10:00 PM on Thursday, July 22 and is expected to last until 4:00 AM on Friday, July 23 and will affect 20 customers. The impacted areas will be 112 through 208 East Wishkah Street, the Aberdeen Timberland Library and businesses in the Old Daily World Building. All impacted customers will receive notification phone calls from the PUD.
The outage is part of an ongoing project by the PUD to conduct system maintenance.
In preparation for this outage, customers are advised to take precautions with any electronic equipment such as computers, televisions, and microwaves by unplugging those items. You should leave them disconnected until after the power has been fully restored.
The outage duration of six hours is only an estimate and power could be restored at any time as work is completed. Therefore, it is not safe to do electrical work or repairs during that period.
Ocean Shores, North Beach and a large section of East County are amongst the areas of Western Washington highlighted in new, interactive map displaying areas lacking quality internet access.
The public “Indicators of Broadband Need” tool released this week by the U.S. Department of Commerce’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) puts on one map, for the first time, data from both public and private sources. It contains data aggregated at the county, census tract, and census block level from the U.S. Census Bureau, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), M-Lab, Ookla and Microsoft.
The map, along with data acquired by the State Department of Commerce speed test, will provide useful data for the PUD as it pursues grants for future projects, including expansion on the State Route 12 corridor in East County.
“Any effort to close the digital divide starts with solid data, and NTIA continues to help policymakers make more informed decisions on expanding broadband access,” said Acting NTIA Administrator Evelyn Remaley. “Now, the public can benefit from our platform to see which areas of the country still don’t have broadband at speeds needed to participate in the modern economy.”
The map also puts poverty and lack of broadband access on the same page. The dataset allows you to see where high-poverty communities are located and how that relates to internet usage patterns, as well as to a lack of computers and related equipment. The map also shows usage patterns in tribal communities, which have historically suffered from a lack of internet access. Users can toggle the separate data sets on and off to compare information and search for specific locations, including Tribal lands and minority-serving institutions, to gain a better understanding of where broadband needs are greatest.
The Grays Harbor PUD Commissioners have announced an upcoming vacancy on the PUD Board of Commissioners. The vacancy arises because of the retirement of District 3 Commissioner Russ Skolrood.
Under state law, the two remaining Commissioners have 90 days to appoint a replacement to fill the vacancy until next year’s election. Application instructions can be found on the PUD website at www.ghpud.org. Applications will be accepted until 5:00 p.m. on June 30. Those interested can download application instructions from the PUD website at https://www.ghpud.org/employment-opportunities/892-commissioner-vacancy-district-3.
The candidate for the position must be a registered voter living within the PUD's District 3 which includes Hoquiam, Humptulips, Ocean Shores, Copalis, Pacific Beach, Moclips, Taholah, Amanda Park, and Quinault. Grays Harbor PUD is an Equal Opportunity Employer and as such, encourages all qualified individuals in the community to apply.
Candidates should have a strong interest in public service, be willing to commit the time necessary to perform the Commissioner's duties, and be able to meet the challenges of fulfilling the District’s mission to “Serve our community with high value utility services at the lowest practical cost.”
The PUD Commissioners will be addressing significant issues for the customers of the PUD during 2021 and the future, including compliance with the Energy Independence Act, requirements for renewable energy and conservation, rising costs of power and operations, minimal load growth, and future power supply challenges. The Commissioners also approve the utility budget; make policy decisions that affect the District and its customers; set rates and charges for services; approve the Strategic Plan; and appoint the General Manager.
The position of PUD Commissioner pays a monthly salary and per diem compensation for meetings attended on behalf of the District pursuant to RCW 54.12.080. Commissioners are also eligible for group insurance for themselves, their immediate family, and dependents.
Grays Harbor PUD has 165 employees, and serves over 42,000 residential, commercial, and industrial customers in Grays Harbor County and adjacent counties, with telecommunications, energy services, and electrical energy.