CONCORD – The City of Concord has been recognized by the American Public Power Association (APPA) for reliable electric service and safe operating practices in 2011. The City’s designation for the Reliable Public Power Diamond Award and first-place in the APPA Safety Awards of Excellence were announced during the association’s annual Engineering and Operations Technical Conference held in Cleveland, Ohio.
Overhead Operations Coordinator Jackie Rushing (2nd from left), Underground Operations Coordinator David Mauldin (center), and Education Specialist Larry Bradley (2nd from right) accept the RP3 award from APPA representatives in Cleveland, OH (click image to enlarge).
The City of Concord’s Electric Systems
Department is one of 176 of the nation’s more than 2,000 public power utilities to earn Reliable Public Power Provider
) recognition from the APPA for providing consumers with the highest degree of reliable and safe electric service. Brent McKinney, manager, electric transmission and distribution at City Utilities of Springfield, Mo., and chair of APPA’s RP3
Review Panel, presented the award on April 16.
“RP3 utilities are serving their customers at the very highest level,” said McKinney, “These utilities have demonstrated that they are providing excellent service now as well as keeping their eyes forward on improvements for the future.”
The RP3 Diamond designation recognizes public power utilities that demonstrate highest proficiency in four key disciplines: reliability, safety, workforce development, and system improvement. Criteria within each category are based on sound business practices and represent a utility-wide commitment to safe and reliable delivery of electricity. Awards are earned in three levels: Gold Level, scoring 80-89 percent, Platinum Level, scoring 90-99 percent, and Diamond Level, scoring a perfect 100 percent.
“Receiving the RP3 Diamond Award designation means a lot to us,” said Bob Pate, Concord’s Electric Systems director. “It’s an honor to be recognized on a national level for the work we are doing here locally in the City of Concord.”
This is the seventh year that RP3 recognition has been offered. Although this is the first time Concord has attained the Diamond Level, the City has twice before received the two-year designation at the Platinum Level. APPA is the national organization representing more than 2,000 not-for-profit, community-, and state- owned electric utilities.
Rushing (2nd from left), Mauldin (center), and Bradley (2nd from right) accept the safety award from APPA representatives in Cleveland, OH (click image to enlarge).
Additionally, the Electric Systems Department earned first place in the APPA Safety Awards of Excellence
in the category for utilities with 116,000 worker-hours of annual worker exposure. Darrell Shaw, chair of the APPA Safety Committee, and safety and technical training specialist at Memphis, Tennessee Light Gas and Water Division presented the award on April 17.
“Safety should always be priority number one for electric utilities,” said Shaw. “Sending each and every one of our employees home safe to their families every night is what it’s all about.”
More than 275 utilities entered the contest, which has been held annually for the last 52 years. Entrants were placed in categories according to their number of worker hours and judged for the most incident-free records during 2011. The incidence rate, used to judge contest entries, is based on the number of work-related reportable injuries or illnesses and the number of worker-hours during 2011, as defined by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).
“A lot of work goes into building a strong safety record,” added Pate. “The Electric Systems Department looks forward to continuing to improve its safety practices as it provides reliable service to the community.”
Another recent highlight for the department was the induction of retired director William A. (Bill) Seamone into the International Lineman’s Museum Hall of Fame in March. The Hall of Fame was established in 2006, and pays tribute to those linemen who continually exceed in the call of duty and exemplify those qualities that establish the true nature of the brotherhood of electrical lineman.
Seamone began his over forty-year career in Concord as a ground technician in 1968, and remained until he retired in 2009. He commented how fortunate he had been to experience the tremendous change, advancement, and opportunity within the electric transmission and distribution field during his career. “If the electric transmission and distribution business was a large house, I’ve lived and worked in every room in the house.” His greatest joy, however, was simply the opportunity to work alongside great people while serving people.
|International Lineman's Hall of Fame trophy (click image to enlarge).|
The Hall of Fame inductees are announced annually at the APPA International Lineman’s Rodeo, and their names are engraved in an 8 foot black granite monument at the museum in Shelby. Seamone has previously been recognized with the ElectriCities Public Power Lifetime Achievement Award.
“Bob Pate and his team exemplify our organization’s commitment to customer service,” said City Manager Brian Hiatt. “We’re honored to have such recognition of the great jobs our coworkers do in the community every day.”
RP3®is a registered service mark of APPA.
The City has recently announced a new residential high-efficiency heat pump rebate program for customers of the City’s electric system. The goal is to promote the purchase and installation of higher efficiency electric heat pumps, with a minimum Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER) of 14.00, as a new installation or to replace an existing, lower efficiency system. For more information or to download an application, visit concordnc.gov/Departments/Electric/Heat-Pump-Rebate.
For more information:
APPA RP3 Program: Tobias Sellier, 202-467-2927
APPA Safety Awards: Michael J. Hyland, P.E., 202-467-2986