PEC News


This un-profound and un-helpful comment was prompted by the 5/15/2017 board meeting.

I recommend watching the board meeting recording and then you will know all that I do. I suggest you advance directly to the item #3: 2017-167 Cooperative Update - J Hewa.

My Chrome browser would not display the video. If you encounter the same issue, simply use another browser program.

I would have preferred to see the board address the issue in some way at that meeting, rather than hide everything behind the wall of "executive session". At minimum an attempt should have been made to communicate a timeline and mechanism for more information to be shared with the membership. Better still would be outlining steps to address Mr. Hewa's concerns. His performance up to this time has been solid and to lose him over such an issue is disappointing. Finding the right fit in a CEO is no trivial matter as it arguably took 3 tries for the PEC to do so and a few years to benefit in overall performance as Hewa made significant operational and personnel decisions early in his tenure but such efforts take time to bear fruit though they did.

UPDATE: 5/30/2017 - John Hewa officially resigned on May 25th. PEC website notice.

This occurred after an emergency board meeting. Nothing posted in the formal PEC posting site:

My hope had been the issues created last fall had passed and I looked forward to some productive project time with PEC's senior management in a directive role. Now it looks like a CEO search and unknown personnel issues will dominate the rest of the year - drat.

I feel sympathy for whomever wins the director election. My enthusiasm for the role is dampened even as my sense of obligation has risen. It was an error to casually lose such an effective CEO, when from my vantage point, it was the board whose action (or inaction) was most in question.

UPDATE: 6/3 - Austin American Statesmen article on Hewa's resignation can be found here: link

Aug. 2018 - I must admit that once I had no skin in the game (beyond my personal electric bill), I behaved like the vast majority of people and paid little attention to PEC activity. I suppose we can all be grateful for the relative calm that appears to have followed selection of Julie Parsley as CEO. I do hope that PEC will show greater aspirations on its energy sourcing. It has the option to source 20% of its power from other than the LCRA and seems to be doing little to leverage that opportunity to deliver a healthier low-carbon emission portfolio.

Update Dec. 2018 - As suspected, $ was passed to Mr. Hewa in exchange for his quiet exit. Sad that we can't discuss such things in a transparent way. Who benefits from this except those who wish to distort the real picture?

January 2022 - Time passes and the PEC delivered fine service - arguably its first priority, but...

  • The limited efforts to diversify power sources assured that the PEC is among those service providers with a hefty bill from the February 2021 Storm Uri event. I support the decision to simply pay the hefty fuel bill in an expeditious manner. It is a nod of sorts to transparency and doing so is arguably most fair as the current COOP membership selected the leadership that made this outcome probable. Oh what a joy the TX energy market is - the NG distribution system can deliver a fraction of its commodity compared to prior weeks, bring the electric grid to its knees and be rewarded with windfall profits with essentially no consequence. The energy sourcing game is truly rigged to our collective harm and the benefit of a minority - socialize damage and risk, privatize profit.

  • The PEC board seems to embraced a relatively negative slant toward residential solar and is set to change the fee structure to extract more money specifically from residential solar owners. Push back on an initial proposal prompted a second cost of service study which produced a less complex and more acceptable proposal, but it still allowed only a limited set of benefits to be considered with respect to solar energy generation.

  • As the wholesale market, controlled by the state (PUC and ERCOT), holds us all captive as consumers. It is important that the vital service providers act with a spirit of full cost and benefit accounting to create and energy system that truly meets all our needs for resilience and sustainability, as well as reliability.