Tag Archives: SRP

Prevent Child Drownings

SRP among Top Adoption-Friendly Workplaces

Salt River Project was ranked among the top adoption-friendly workplaces among a group of 100 energy and utility companies on the 2013 Best Adoption-Friendly Workplaces List, released today by the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption.

In the 2013 survey, SRP was ranked No. 5 in the nation in the Energy and Utilities category.  This is the fourth time SRP has been recognized among the top five companies in its industry in the seven years that the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption has issued its list of adoption-friendly companies.

Employees who participate in the SRP adoption benefit program can receive payments, per child, of as much as $4,000 for a regular adoption and as much as $6,000 for a special needs adoption.  Employees receive the payments in their paycheck when the adoption is complete and final.

Under the employee program, the adopted child is eligible to be added to the SRP group insurance plan once he or she is legally placed in the home.  Also, employees may be eligible for up to 12 weeks of leave as defined under the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA).

Every year, the Dave Thomas Foundation announces America’s top 100 adoption-friendly employers, the top 10 by size, and the leaders in each industry from its annual survey of U.S. employers. Rankings are determined by an analysis of a company’s adoption benefits, including the maximum amount of financial reimbursement and paid leave for families who adopt. The top 100 are featured in the September issue of Employee Benefit News, a SourceMedia publication that is the leading source of information for benefits decision makers.

The list recognizes organizations of every size and industry that offer adoption benefits. Employers who applied for the list offer an average of $7,000 and four weeks of paid leave. Financial reimbursement varies from $500 to $25,300, and one to 18 weeks of paid leave. Unpaid leave for adoption, beyond what is required by the Family and Medical Leave Act, ranges from one week to three years.

The Wendy’s Company is No. 1 on this year’s list, with a combination of up to $25,300 in adoption assistance and up to six weeks of paid adoption leave. To view the full list, visit www.adoptionfriendlyworkplace.org. (The Foundation is not an affiliate of The Wendy’s Company.)

There are more than 100,000 children in the U.S. foster care system waiting to be adopted. Every year, more than 26,000 children in foster care turn 18 and age out of the system without families. The annual Best Adoption-Friendly Workplaces list helps increase foster care adoption awareness while celebrating businesses that support adoptive families.

The Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption is a national nonprofit public charity dedicated exclusively to finding permanent homes for the more than 134,000 children waiting in North America’s foster care systems. Created by Wendy’s® founder Dave Thomas who was adopted, the Foundation implements evidence-based, results-driven national service programs, foster care adoption awareness campaigns and advocacy initiatives. To learn more, visit www.davethomasfoundation.org      or call 1-800-ASK-DTFA.

SRP is the largest provider of water and power to the greater Phoenix metropolitan area.

roosevelt-dam-arizona

2013 Runoff Best in Last Three Years

While the early forecast of an El Nino season never materialized, the 2013 runoff season nevertheless produced just enough snowmelt to refill the reservoirs to near the previous year’s level on the Salt and Verde rivers going into the heaviest-use period of the calendar year.

And, after two of the driest La Nina winters on record, water managers at Salt River Project aren’t complaining with the 444,788 acre-feet of stream flow accumulated in the first five months of 2013, the January-through-May period that amounts to the year’s runoff season.

“We’re thrilled that the runoff we got this year put us back to where we were a year ago,” said Charlie Ester, SRP’s manager of Water Resource Operations. “That may not sound like a lot, compared to years such as 2010 when we filled our reservoirs, but essentially we have regained all of the water that we used the previous year.”

Thanks to another boost from a better-than-average monsoon season, the reservoirs on the Salt and Verde rivers today stand at 55 percent full with 1.28 million acre-feet stored – exactly the same percentage as one year ago following the 23rd and 16th driest runoff seasons among the 115-year-old records kept by SRP.

Theodore Roosevelt Lake, which holds about two-thirds of the combined water stored on the Salt and Verde rivers, today stands at 45 percent full. Current storage on the Salt River system is 54 percent; the two reservoirs on the Verde River are a combined 62 percent of capacity.

This year’s runoff season, while still below the 30-year median runoff of 534,336 acre-feet, was the most productive since 1,418,960 acre-feet of water was accumulated during the 2010 runoff season — the 20th most productive year on record. The snowmelt runoff in 2012 amounted to only about 196,064 acre-feet, which followed the 2011 runoff total of 222,907 acre-feet.

SRP is the largest raw water supplier in the Phoenix metropolitan area, normally delivering about 1 million acre-feet annually.

Quaggas_on_flip_flop

Quagga Mussels Found in 2 SRP Canal Locations

A routine inspection of Salt River Project’s canal system last month has yielded evidence of quagga mussels at Arizona Falls on the Arizona Canal and on a canal structure in the Crosscut Canal. This is the first evidence of adult mussels in SRP’s canal system.

SRP crews on July 12 found a quagga mussel settlement during an inspection of monitoring points along the Arizona Canal. Both checkpoints contained a very small amount of adult mussels — four at Arizona Falls and less than 20 in the Crosscut Canal. Indications were that the mussels were recent arrivals at both facilities, which are located along canals on the north side of the Salt River.

Inspection points on canals and laterals located south of the Salt River remain free of quaggas. There is still no evidence of quagga mussels in the SRP reservoir system on the Salt and Verde rivers, which are also monitored regularly.  Boaters are urged to continue to “clean, drain and dry” their boats to prevent introducing quagga mussels to the reservoir system.

Nina Mullins, senior director of Water Shareholder Operations, said SRP is coordinating with the Bureau of Reclamation and other federal and state agencies to evaluate methods of reducing the impact of the invasive species and will continue to communicate any updates or changes regarding the status of the quagga mussels to SRP’s water customers and municipal partners.

“Although the quagga mussel numbers are very few, we want to continue to ensure that our water transmission and delivery system stays in peak operating condition to serve all of our water customers,” she said.  “We expected to find these mussels in our canal system eventually, so we are very fortunate that they were discovered early and that we’ll have a head start in deciding how we’ll minimize their presence.”

Each fall and winter, portions of SRP’s major canals north and south of the Salt River are dried up for about a month, each side separately, so construction and maintenance work can be done. Mullins said that the next scheduled dry-ups in November and January will also provide an opportunity for SRP crews to look for further evidence of mussels and to implement increased controls to protect facilities located along the canals.

Mullins said the checkpoints at both facilities on the Arizona and Crosscut canals where the quagga mussels were found are located in slower sections of the canal, but that the discovery in the Arizona and Crosscut canals may indicate adaptation to SRP canal system conditions.

Previously, adult quagga mussels were spotted three times – in 2008, 2009 and earlier this year — at the doorstep of SRP’s water-delivery system, the SRP-CAP Interconnect Facility, where SRP takes occasional deliveries of Central Arizona Project water.

Quagga mussels were inadvertently introduced into Lake Mead, and have spread along the Colorado River since first detected in 2007. They now can be found in Mohave, Havasu and Lake Pleasant reservoirs, and are assumed to be spreading in the Central Arizona Project system.  SRP was taking deliveries of CAP water via SRP’s northside canal system in recent months.

Quagga mussels attach to hard surfaces such as concrete and pipes, and can multiply rapidly. Mussels can affect canals, aqueducts, water intakes, dams and power plants, resulting in significant maintenance costs. The mussel can also damage watercraft and impact lake ecosystems and fisheries.

Mullins said SRP will continue its collaboration with the U.S. Forest Service and the Bureau of Reclamation to support the “Don’t Move a Mussel” campaign to limit the spread of quagga mussels in Arizona’s waterways.  More information about the outreach campaign is available on SRP’s website at www.srpnet.com/quagga or the Arizona Department of Fish and Game website.

SRP is the largest provider of water and electricity to the greater Phoenix metropolitan area, delivering about 1 million acre-feet to agricultural, urban and municipal water users and providing electric service to about 970,000 customers.

Lori Singleton

Lori Singleton – 50 Most Influential Women in Arizona Business

Lori Singleton – Manager of Sustainability Initiatives and Technologies, SRP

Singleton has been with SRP for 35 years and is responsible for developing and implementing solar and sustainability programs, and wireline and wireless telecom solutions for customers. Under her direction, SRP has provided incentives to more than 12,000 customers who have installed solar energy systems on their homes and businesses. She is also an active volunteer and effective advocate on the boards of Audubon of Arizona and the National Solar Energy Power Association.

Surprising fact: “I love to country dance.”

Biggest challenge: “Finding the right balance between work and family, particularly as a single mom. That said, my daughter is 25, finishing college and fondly remembers hanging out in mom’s office while she worked or tagging along for volunteer events.”

Fifty Most Influential Women in Arizona Business – Every year in its July/August issue Arizona Business Magazine features 50 women who make an impact on Arizona business. To see the full list, read the digital issue >>

electricity

Customers Rank SRP Highest in West, U.S.

Salt River Project’s electric customers continue to give SRP high marks for customer satisfaction.  In a report issued today by J.D. Power and Associates, SRP received the top score for residential electric service in the Large Utilities segment in the western United States for the 12th consecutive year and the highest total among the nation’s largest utilities for the fifth year in a row.

SRP’s ranking was bolstered by sweeping the No. 1 spot in the survey’s Large Utilities segment in the West region for all six survey components, Power Quality and Reliability, Billing and Payment, Corporate Citizenship, Price, Communications and Customer Service. Among all large utilities across the nation, SRP scored highest in customer satisfaction for the eighth time in the 15 years J.D. Power and Associates has conducted its study of residential customers.  With a Customer Satisfaction Index score of 709 on a 1,000-point scale in this year’s ranking, SRP is the only electric utility that has been ranked among the top 10 in the U.S. in all 15 years.

It is the 14th time in the last 15 years that SRP scored the highest in the West among large electric utilities (500,000 or more residential customers). The average score in the West large region, which covers utilities in Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington and Wyoming, was 654.

The 2013 Electric Utility Residential Customer Satisfaction Study was based on responses from about 103,000 online interviews conducted from July 2012 through May 2013 among residential customers of the 126 largest electric utility brands across the nation, which collectively represent more than 94 million households.  More information on the J.D. Power and Associates’ study can be found at www.jdpower.com/library/index.htm.

SRP is the largest provider of electricity to the greater Phoenix metropolitan area, providing electric service to more than 970,000 customers.  SRP also is the metropolitan area’s largest supplier of water, delivering about 1 million acre-feet to agricultural, urban and municipal water users.

Phoenix Dust Storm 2011 Video Footage

2013 Monsoon Safety Reminders Offered by SRP

The average starting date of the monsoon is this week, according to the National Weather Service. Mother Nature is taking notice as meteorologists are predicting “high humidity, cloudy skies and possible thunderstorms for the Valley this week.” As the monsoon envelops the Valley from July to September, being prepared and aware are essential for safety.

SRP offers Valley residents these summer safety tips:

• Be sure to have flashlights, a battery-operated radio and a phone readily accessible in case of a power outage.
• Maintain a first-aid kit that includes your family’s prescription medications. Make sure items     in the first-aid kit are in usable condition.
• Try to remain indoors during a storm.
• If caught outdoors, stay at least 100 feet from any downed power line.
• Never try to help someone trapped by a power line.  The line could be energized and endanger your own safety.  Instead, immediately call 911 for help.  Then call SRP’s emergency number, (602) 236-8811, to report the incident.
• If a power line hits your car while you are in it, stay inside the car until professional help arrives.
• If your vehicle catches fire and you must leave it, avoid making contact with the vehicle and the ground at the same time.  Jump from the vehicle, landing with both feet together.  Shuffle or hop away, keeping both feet in contact with each other until you are at least 100 feet from the vehicle.  This may avoid making your body a ground path between energized and grounded areas or objects.
• Do not shower during a storm.  Lightning can travel through pipes.
• Do not swim during a storm.  Lightning can strike bodies of water.
• Lightning can travel through electric lines and damage electronic equipment.  When practical, unplug the power cords to all electronic equipment to provide total protection from lightning-induced damage.
• To check for “real-time” updates during a power outage, customers can go to www.srpnet.com.  Customers then can click on the “power outage map” link and scroll over the yellow pushpins to get information about affected areas, number of people impacted and expected time of repair.  (Valley resident also can access the outage map from a smart phone or tablet.)
• To be alerted via email or text when your home is affected by an outage, customers can sign up for a notification on My Account. To learn more, visit www.srpnet.com and search “My Account.”

For more tips, visit www.srpnet.com/safety/storm. SRP routinely posts updates and outage information on Twitter and Facebook during major storms. To get connected, follow @SRPconnect on Twitter or “like” SRP’s Facebook page at www.facebook.com/srpconnect. During a power outage, SRP customer service representatives can be reached 24 hours a day at (602) 236-8888.

roosevelt-dam-arizona

Centennial Time Capsule Completes Journey

A time capsule to commemorate the 100th anniversary of Theodore Roosevelt Dam was delivered to the dam today and placed in the tunnel area, where it will remain until it is opened for the structure’s 150th anniversary in 2061.

The new time capsule, filled with new items that best describe water and power and how they impact residents of the Salt River Valley, replaces the original version that was installed at the dam in 1961 and then opened in the spring of 2011.

During the run-up to the Roosevelt Dam Centennial in March 2011, Salt River Project invited employees and customers to contribute ideas via Facebook and e-mails for the contents of the new capsule, which was themed, “How water and power influence our lives in the desert we call home.”

Currently, background information, diagrams and pictures related to the time capsule are on display at the Tonto Basin Visitors Center. Eventually, there will be a permanent display at the Dam lookout point, said Ileen Snoddy, community outreach representative for SRP.

“We felt the time capsule would be a great way to preserve the history of this great area of Arizona,” said Snoddy.  “The items in the time capsule capture the spirit of SRP and of water reclamation in Arizona. It’s exciting to imagine what the reaction will be at the 150th anniversary in 2061.”

Among the items included in the new time capsule:
* Copper shavings from the 1961 time capsule
* A digitized Roosevelt Dam Centennial video
* Centennial issue of Pulse, the SRP employee newsletter
* Paper SRP power and water bills
* List of SRP employees and Board/Council members in 2011 and an SRP employee badge
* SRP bylaws
* A cell phone, iPod, music CD, movie DVD, incandescent light bulb
* Arizona state quarter
* Aerial photo of metro Phoenix
* Arizona Diamondbacks baseball ticket from March 18, 2011, game

Before it was sealed in April, the Centennial time capsule and its new contents were on display during the spring and summer of 2011 at Phoenix-area museums, including the Arizona Science Center, Scottsdale Historical Society Little Red Schoolhouse, River of Time Museum and Superstition Mountain Historical Society.

Also on display on the centennial museum tour were items from the first Roosevelt Dam time capsule, which was embedded in the dam in 1961 as part of the Golden Jubilee celebration. Some of the items from the time capsule marking the first 50 years included:
* A telegram from President John F. Kennedy
* A roster of people present at the Golden Jubilee on March 18, 1961, and a copy of the official invitation to special guests and dignitaries
* Articles of Incorporation and bylaws of the Salt River Valley Water Users’ Association
* Bylaws of the Salt River Project Agricultural Improvement and Power District
* A copy of the Kent Decree, which has done much to set the pattern of water rights
* Roster of SRP employees in 1961
* SRP’s 1961 Annual Report
* Special issue of the SRP CURRENT News, which launched the Golden Jubilee celebration
* April 1961 Arizona Highways magazine titled “Water and the Thirsty Land”
* Two proclamations by Phoenix Mayor Sam Mardian Jr. and Arizona Gov. Paul J. Fannin declaring March 18, 1961, as the Theodore Roosevelt Dam Golden Jubilee

Dedicated in March 1911, Theodore Roosevelt Dam is the cornerstone of a system of waterways managed by SRP that has served as an economic catalyst in creating the Phoenix metropolitan area.  Hydroelectric power from the dam and the reliable water supply it provided helped grow the Valley’s rural areas into one of the more prosperous communities in the Southwest.

volunteer

SRP Donates $94,500 to Nonprofit Agencies

Salt River Project employees are turning their volunteer hours into much-needed funds for the nonprofit organizations they assist through the SRP Dollars for Doers program.

The program contributes funds, ranging from $250 to $1,000, directly to community nonprofits based upon the number of volunteer hours donated during the 2012 calendar year by SRP employees. The grant program is designed to provide funding to nonprofit agencies that are also supported by the volunteer efforts of SRP employees.

“SRP has a distinct heritage built upon responding to the needs of our customers and the communities in which they live, and we recognize the value of providing support to organizations whose programs are improving the lives of our community,” said Jen Martyn who manages the SRP Volunteer Program.

SRP donated $94,500 to 106 nonprofit agencies in which 141 SRP employees donated more than 29,000 hours of their time and experience in cities throughout the Valley, including Avondale, Camp Verde, Casa Grande, Chandler, Douglas, El Mirage, Gilbert, Glendale, Higley, Litchfield Park, Mesa, Page, Peoria, Phoenix, Pine Top, Queen Creek, San Tan Valley, Scottsdale, St. Johns, Tempe and Tolleson and Tucson.

Employees contributed to their community in a number of ways, including:

· coaching youth football, baseball, soccer and swimming,
· providing children with special needs horse therapy rides,
· ushering during arts and cultural events,
· preparing meals for those in need,
· mentoring and providing leadership to youth and
· assisting schools through parent-teacher organizations and booster clubs.

srp installs solar energy systems

SRP Awarded for Outstanding Safety Practices

Salt River Project has earned the American Public Power Association’s Safety Award of Excellence for safe operating practices in 2012.  It was SRP’s ninth first-place ranking since 1980 and third in the last four years in the category for utilities with systems with 4 million or more annual worker-hours of exposure.

SRP was one of 112 public power systems that were presented the 2012 Safety Award of Excellence on March 25 by Bob Rumbaugh, chair of the APPA Safety Committee and an energy services consultant for Columbus, Ohio-based American Municipal Power Inc., during the association’s annual Engineering & Operations Technical Conference in Kissimmee, Fla.

“SRP employees are proud of their safety record and we are striving to continually improve both our safety and the reliable electric service for our customers,” said Don Breiland, SRP’s director of Risk Management.

More than 280 utilities entered the 2012 contest, which is the highest number in the APPA contest’s history. Entrants were placed in categories according to their number of worker-hours and judged for the most incident-free records during 2012. 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 2012, as defined by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

A complete list of the 2012 winners is available at www.PublicPower.org.

The safety contest has been held annually for the last 53 years. APPA is the national service organization for the nation’s more than 2,000 not-for-profit, community- and state-owned electric utilities, serving more than 47 million people.

SRP is the third-largest public power utility in the nation, serving more than 980,000 electric customers in the greater Phoenix metropolitan area.

energy supply - AZ Business Magazine May/June 2012

Solar Energy Powers Aspire Kids Sports Center

As the sounds of kids jumping, tumbling and somersaulting echo through the Aspire Kids Sports Center in Chandler, solar panels silently soak in the sun on the roof of the 32,000-square-foot facility.

With the help of incentives from the SRP EarthWise Solar Program, owners Scott and Dona Barclay have invested in the 100-kilowatt system, which will provide approximately half of the center’s electricity needs.

“We have had it in our plans to put solar on our building since we built Aspire,” said Scott Barclay. “We feel living in Arizona, it makes sense to utilize the God-given resources provided by the sun. We have had solar water heating on our own home since the 1980s. The technology has now advanced to make it more affordable, so we decided now was the time to act.”

The facility is equipped with state-of-the-art gymnastics equipment, a heated indoor swimming pool, dance and martial arts room and a preschool gym. It is also the home and training center of the ASU men’s gymnastics team.

“Aspire is another example of business owners who are making investments in the future of environmentally, emission-free, renewable energy,” said Lori Singleton, director of SRP Program Operations.

For more information about the SRP EarthWise Energy Solar Program, visit www.srpnet.com/solar.

volunteer

11 SRP Employees Honored for Volunteer Work

In recognition of the invaluable contribution of their time, efforts and expertise to their communities, 11 SRP employee volunteers were awarded the SRP Presidents’ Volunteer Spirit Awards. These dedicated employees have given countless hours of their time to help families put food on their tables; provide guidance to Latino youths as they prepare for college and give children with special needs horse therapy rides.

“Each year SRP recognizes inspiring employee volunteers who give of their time to helping Arizonans through a wide variety of community organizations,” said Rosemary Gannon, manager of SRP Community Outreach, who added that SRP employees and retirees, with help from their friends and families, donate thousands of volunteer hours a year to their communities. “Strong, thriving communities rely on the volunteer efforts of individuals like these recipients.”

This year, in addition to the SRP Presidents’ Volunteer Spirit Award, SRP employee Kyle Bridges was honored with the Karl F. Abel Volunteer Recognition Award for his sustained leadership role in addressing significant human service needs in his community. The late Karl F. Abel, a Glendale resident who served as president of SRP from 1972 to 1982, was a strong community advocate and  provided volunteer leadership to numerous organizations.

The 2013 SRP Presidents’ Volunteer Spirit Award honorees and the nonprofits they assist are:

Chandler resident Holly Schaefer – AZ Happy Tails Animal Rescue
Holly Schaefer is a founding member of AZ Happy Tails Animal Rescue, which was established in 2009 to rescue and find loving homes for animals that are stray, abandoned or at risk of euthanasia. To date, AZ Happy Tails has rescued and found homes for more than 400 animals. Schaefer is responsible for all animal intake and adoption decisions, and she coordinates with foster homes to supply them with food and bedding and help with any other needs they may have.

Gilbert resident Barbara Sprungl – The Centers for Habilitation (TCH)
The Centers for Habilitation (TCH) provides promotes independence for Arizonans with developmental and physical disabilities. In 2010, Barbara Sprungl joined TCH’s board of directors, and she volunteers more than 20 hours a month. She chairs the Fund Development Committee and is vice chair of the Finance, Governance and Executive committee. She volunteers for fundraising events and helps with everything from setup and operation to planning. Sprungl implemented a new formal fundraising model and trained the rest of the board on the new approach. In 2012, she raised $12,500 for the Monster Mash Sponsorship Committee.

Glendale resident David Larson – Cactus High School Robotics Team
The Cactus High School Robotics Team is experienced in building, maintaining and operating robots. David Larson has been a mentor and coach since 2009 and volunteers an average of 67 hours a month. Because of his time investment, the robotics team has shown dramatic improvement. Larson readies the team for FIRST Robotics competition and this year they built a robot that plays basketball. Larson also holds workshops for welding, tube and wire soldering, painting, and many other skills. He also started a safety program, complete with a study guide and an exam for the program.

Mesa resident Kyle Tilghman – American Youth Soccer Organization — Region 1079
The American Youth Soccer Organization (AYSO) provides soccer programs for children ages 4–19 and Region 1079 is the largest soccer program in the East Valley. The region is run completely by volunteer coaches and referees, and a number of volunteers dedicate a lot of time to securing soccer fields and marketing the organization. Kyle Tilghman has been a volunteer coach with AYSO’s Region 1079 since 2006. Six years ago, he was volunteering three hours a month, but over the years, he has taken on more responsibilities. In addition to coaching and refereeing, he serves as the coach administrator for the region.

Peoria resident John Buonagurio – Theater Works
Theater Works is a nonprofit performing arts organization that has been serving Peoria and the West Valley for more than 25 years. John Buonagurio is a volunteer of nearly three years and is chairman of the board. He also serves on the Governance, Development and Artistic committees. It has been a challenging time for Theater Works, like many other arts organizations, as support at all levels has waned because of the recession. Buonagurio’s leadership over the past few years has brought continuity to Theater Works during a time of change and challenges.

Peoria resident Mark Burkhart – St. Mary’s Food Bank  Alliance
St. Mary’s Food Bank alleviates hunger by gathering and distributing food to  two-thirds of Arizona’s 15 counties and is committed to volunteerism, building community relationships and improving the quality of life for Arizonans in need. Mark Burkhart has planned and managed a golf tournament that raises between $10,000 and $15,000 annually. Burkhart is dedicated to St. Mary’s and knows that every dollar he raises means seven meals for the hungry. In the 10 years he has been coordinating the golf tournament, he has helped St. Mary’s serve more than 900,000 meals.

Peoria resident Jim Custis – Joni and Friends Arizona
Joni and Friends Arizona works with local churches and organizations to form outreach programs for those who face the daily challenge of life with a disability. For the past six years, Jim Custis has been fundraising for the organization’s Family Retreat program, which provides a respite for families affected by disabilities. Custis and his family have raised more than $20,000 and spend about 15 hours a month volunteering with Joni and Friends and one week of vacation every summer serving families affected by disabilities.

Peoria resident Christopher Rodriguez – AGUILA Youth Leadership Institute
AGUILA Youth Leadership Institute prepares Latino/Latina youth, beginning as high school freshmen, for college admissions and graduation. Christopher Rodriguez fundraises, serves on the board of advisors and uses his bilingual skill to help Spanish-speaking parents understand the benefits of AGUILA and the importance of higher education for their children. He’s also a mentor, helping these students pursue their goals of higher education. Rodriguez is dedicated to this program because he knows many of the youth who attend AGUILA will be the first in their families to attend college.

Phoenix resident Shari Brady – Arizona FIRST Lego League
Arizona FIRST Lego League (FLL) is a robotics program for students ages 9–14 that promotes science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) projects. Shari Brady began volunteering when she was an ASU student and continues to volunteer about 17 hours a week. She serves on the Advisory Committee, which plans regional tournaments and helps develop volunteer recruiting strategies. This year, the tournament was expanded to include remote northern Arizona teams, allowing a number of school teams from Native American communities to participate without long travel times to tournament venues.

San Tan Valley resident Kyle Bridges – Epic Food Mission
Epic Food Mission provides hope, help and support to families facing financial difficulty in the Queen Creek/San Tan Valley area. Every first and third Saturday of the month, Epic Food Mission provides food boxes, baby food and personal hygiene items for distribution to those in need. For five years, Kyle Bridges has volunteered with Epic Food Mission, serving as the organization’s distribution coordinator. He is responsible for organizing 50 volunteers and six team leaders to prepare hundreds of care packages for families. Bridges donates 50 hours of his time each month. For the past three years, he has also found time to volunteer with Compassion Connect, which helps unite and mobilize local churches, nonprofits, schools, and businesses to provide free dental and medical care for underserved populations.

San Tan Valley resident Marty Sonnenberg – Angel Acres Inc.
Angel Acres Inc. is a program created by Marty Sonnenberg in 2003, successfully combining her love of working with special-needs children with her love of working with horses. Every year from October through May, Sonnenberg and other volunteers teach grooming and horse therapy riding as part of a six-week program. During that time, Sonnenberg donates nearly 90 hours a month to keep program costs low and allow all the funds raised to go directly to the program. To date, the program has helped more than 446 children and given more than 2,680 therapy rides.

energy.bill

Navajo Generating Station worth Billions to Navajo Nation

The Navajo Generating Station in northern Arizona will help contribute nearly $13 billion to the Navajo economy and help support thousands of jobs from 2020 through 2044 – if agreements can be reached to keep the plant operating beyond 2019 – according to a study prepared for the Navajo Nation and Salt River Project by the L William Seidman Research Institute at the W.P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University.

Located on the Navajo Nation, near Page, NGS is one of the largest and most important suppliers of electricity in the Southwest.

According to the ASU report, Navajo Generating Station and Kayenta Mine: An Economic Impact Analysis for the Navajo Nation, NGS and the Kayenta Mine, the plant’s coal supplier, will contribute $12.94 billion to the Navajo Nation economy through sustained jobs and wages if the plant was to remain operational through 2044.

NGS currently employs about 518 people, nearly 86 percent of whom are Native American.  The Kayenta Mine has more than 400 employees, of whom about 90 percent are also Native American.

“I have been saying we need to protect existing jobs on the Navajo Nation,” said Navajo Nation President Ben Shelly.  “This study shows that the plant and the mine not only support existing jobs at the plant and mine, but support other jobs in the area.”

The ASU report examined the direct, indirect and induced economic impact of NGS and Kayenta Mine on the Navajo Nation using the IMPLAN model employed by the state of Arizona to examine various economic projections.  A full copy of the report is available at www.ngspower.com.

The study on the plant’s economic impact on the Navajo Nation is separate from a 2012 study from ASU that concluded that NGS and the Kayenta Mine will provide more than $20 billion in economic contributions throughout the state for the period measured from 2011 to 2044.  The new study examined the economic effects exclusively for the Navajo Nation.

Despite its economic importance, a number of significant challenges threaten the future viability of NGS.  To ensure future operations of NGS, the plant’s lease and various rights of way with the Navajo Nation must be extended and the coal supply contract with Peabody Energy renegotiated prior to any additional costly emission controls from the EPA.

The plant’s lease and various rights of way with the Navajo Nation are set to expire around 2019 and the Navajo Nation Council is currently considering legislation to extend them.  In addition, the plant’s owners are also renegotiating the coal supply contract with Peabody Energy.  Perhaps most significantly, the U.S. Environmental Protection has proposed additional and costly environmental rules to address regional visibility.

NGS is a coal-fired power plant that provides electricity to customers in Arizona, Nevada and California, and energy to pump water through the Central Arizona Project.  The participants in NGS include the plant’s operator, SRP; the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation; Arizona Public Service Co.; Los Angeles Department of Water and Power; Tucson Electric Power Co. and NV Energy.

home.energy

Energy Efficiency education saves educator hundreds

When Kris Johnson bought her home 12 years ago, she fell in love with the high ceilings and open floor plan. It’s a unique home in Arizona because the neighborhood is patterned after a New England village, complete with shake roofs and a community lake.

Like any homeowner, there were things Johnson didn’t like about her 2,900-square-foot abode built in 1974. Many involved the discomfort of living in an older home, such as the original air-conditioning unit, which had been “piecemealed” into operation, plus a sweltering upstairs bedroom her twin sons had abandoned.

“My boys had moved out of their own bedroom and into the guestroom because their room was too hot,” Johnson said. “They were sleeping on the floor.”

Johnson knew her home needed improvements, so she decided to undergo an SRP Home Performance with ENERGY STAR® inspection.

During the three-hour inspection, a participating contractor tested for duct system leaks, insulation quality, and the performance of the home’s air-conditioning unit, and made sure gases from the appliances and furnace were flowing out of the house.

When Johnson received her customized “report card” she learned that if all the recommended improvements were made, she could save 34 percent on her utility bill.

“We learned that our window screens were not adequate, and there were better shade screens to keep the heat out,” she said. “We also learned that our rooms were so hot because the returns on the air conditioners, as well as the ducts, weren’t done well enough to cool the entire upstairs.”

Weeks after Johnson’s home inspection, the antiquated upstairs air conditioner “crashed and burned.” She said she didn’t panic, because she felt like an educated homeowner.

“When a repair became necessary, we attacked it with knowledge as opposed to being ignorant. Because of the home inspection, we knew what kinds of air conditioners were available and best for us,” Johnson added. “We got bids and ended up going with the company that did the home inspection. They knew exactly what we needed and were honest.”

Johnson, who is the principal at the International Charter School of Arizona, said she now has lasting knowledge about how to make her home energy efficient.

“Through this program, homeowners like Kris are being empowered and educated,” said Cindy Marzofka, SRP’s manager of program marketing and corporate events. “The inspection normally costs $500, but we feel it’s important for our customers to identify ways to make their homes more comfortable and energy efficient, sometimes for little or no cost, so we offer it for only $99.”

Johnson says she saved hundreds more on home improvement costs by taking advantage of SRP rebates on the duct test and shade screens.

“We knew we had made a smart choice to learn about energy use within our home. Our bill is $100 less than the previous summer. It’s a smart thing to do before the heat of the summer.”

With newly sealed ducts, shade screens on all upstairs windows and two new air conditioners, as well as more returns to allow air to flow throughout the home, Johnson and her family are much more comfortable.  “Because we did the home inspection, we are much more intelligent. And now the boys are back in their bedroom, which is a good thing,” Johnson said with a chuckle.

To schedule a home checkup, call (602) 889-2656. To learn more and get rebates visit savewithsrp.com. To qualify, you must be the homeowner and a current SRP residential electric customer.

 

 

Entrepreneurs

SRP helps Entrepreneurs Learn to Grow Business

Humberto Contreras owns Gorda’s Baja Taco in Phoenix. It’s a tall order for Contreras, like most small-business owners, to operate his restaurant day to day. However, he’s savvy enough to know that to get noticed in the competitive culinary world, you have to get on social media, pronto. Contreras recently enrolled in the free Facebook for Business 101 workshop offered by his utility company, Salt River Project (SRP), to get started.

“I learned Facebook is the ‘in’ thing, and if you’re not on it, you are falling behind,” Contreras said. “I learned what to do, how to post and attract customers, and how to stand out on Facebook.”

Contreras, along with hundreds of other small-business owners, took advantage of the series of free workshops led by Ken Colburn, founder and CEO of Data Doctors. From September 2012 through February 2013, SRP conducted five free workshops about social media and key channels:

·        Social Media for Business 101

·        Facebook for Business 101

·        Twitter for Business 101

·        LinkedIn for Business 101

·        Google AdWords for Business 101

The final social media workshop for SRP small-business customers, Lifecycle Marketing for Small Business, is scheduled for April 30 at the Fiesta Resort Conference Center in Tempe. To learn more or watch the complete video series now available online, go to srpbizresource.com.

“It is no longer a luxury or an option for small-business owners to decide if they are going to engage in social media or not,” Colburn said. “It’s a must to remain relevant. You have to understand this communication tool. It is how people are making buying decisions in virtually every business.”

The social media guru offers his top three tips for entrepreneurs:

1.      Don’t procrastinate. The longer you wait to get started, the further behind you will be.
Don’t let the overwhelming nature of social media keep you from stepping forward.

2.      To start, pick one social network. Learn the basics, stay focused until you feel comfortable and then move on to another network.

3.      Start small. Set aside time. Keep it simple with no more than 15 minutes in the morning and 15 minutes in the evening to get familiar with social media and understand the basics.

“The three keys to social media are to listen, engage and measure,” Colburn explained. “A lot of people make the mistake of using social media as a megaphone to shout their marketing message. Social media is not a monologue; it’s a dialogue. If you are not having conversations with people, you are not doing it right.”

In 2011, SRP launched its Business Resource Center (BRC) to offer small and midsize entrepreneurs a valuable online business resource to help them grow and sustain their businesses. The one-stop resource is packed with critical information in the following categories:

·        Economy at a glance
·        Business success stories
·        Local and national business resources
·        News and research
·        Current and pending legislation
·        Advice from business experts
·        Workshops

Business customers requested more information about social media, which spawned the series of free workshops designed to help small-business owners harness the power of social media.

“I think it’s great for SRP to step up and recognize this is one of the challenges for small businesses and try to help educate people,” Colburn said. “And this is one of the ways Data Doctors also likes to try to give back to the community.”

SRP-CFLbulbs

SRP Board Approves Price Decrease

The Salt River Project Board today approved a price decrease that will result in lowering customer bills by an overall average of 1.1% beginning in May.

The pricing plan reduces two components of SRP’s electric prices and will be in effect for the six summer billing months in 2013, saving a typical residential customer about $1.72 per month.

One of the price components covers program costs related to meeting renewable-energy and energy-efficiency standards, and complying with environmental mandates. The second component recovers fuel costs incurred to generate electricity as well as power purchases to serve customer needs.

The costs of these two components to SRP are directly passed to the customer and are not marked up. They are included in the energy charge amount on the monthly bill.
The lower-than-expected costs, totaling $20.5 million, resulted from:

· higher-than-expected, year-to-date electricity sales to customers,
· cost savings from a short-term sale of energy from a geothermal plant,
· lower-than-anticipated program costs, and
· lower-than-planned natural gas costs.

The temporary price reduction also reflects SRP’s effort to achieve its Sustainable Portfolio goals at a lower-than-anticipated cost to customers. The SRP Board has set a goal to meet 20 percent of SRP’s retail electricity requirements through sustainable resources by the year 2020.

Currently, SRP is ahead of schedule – providing more than 10 percent of retail energy needs with sustainable resources, which include renewable energy, hydro power, conservation, efficiency and pricing measures.

SRP budgets for environmental and fuel/purchased power costs based on current and projected market conditions. Under a mechanism approved by the Board, SRP staff regularly reviews actual costs and may adjust the associated price components if funds are significantly over-collected or under-collected for the expenses.

SRP is the third-largest public power utility in the country, serving about 970,000 electric customers.

hispanic

The 25 Most Influential Hispanic Business Leaders

Benito Almanza
Arizona president
Bank of America
Born into a family of migrant workers, Almanza is now responsible for all lines of business efforts, community and civic activities in the state. The graduate of Stanford University and the University of Santa Clara has been with Bank of America for 30 years, working in California before moving to Arizona in 1992.
His hope for his professional legacy: “Hiring top talent and developing them to replace me someday.”
Surprising fact: “Growing up working with my family in the fields helped me better understand agribusiness banking.”

Marty Alvarez
CEO, principal in charge
Sun Eagle Corporation
Alvarez is founder of family-owned and operated Sun Eagle, one of the top minority-owned general contracting and construction management firms in the country. He has been a chair and officer for the Associated Minority Contractors of America since 1993.
His hope for his professional legacy: “That our well-constructed buildings improved the landscape, and our assistance to individuals and families improved lives.”
Surprising fact: “I have been involved with Shotokan Karate continuously for the past 39 years.”

Victor M. Aranda
Area president, Northern Arizona
Wells Fargo Arizona
Aranda manages six Wells Fargo Community Banking markets; Northeast Arizona, Central Arizona, White Mountains, North Phoenix, North Scottsdale and Scottsdale. He is responsible for 816 team members, 69 banking stores, and $4.1 billion in deposits. A 25-year financial services veteran, Aranda presently serves as a board member for Arizona Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and Valley Leadership Arizona.
His hope for his professional legacy: “My passion in life is to add value to those I come in contact with.  What I would like to be remembered for is how I spent my life serving, helping and developing the leaders of tomorrow.”
Surprising fact: “I was involved and directed a church Spanish choir and I have also sang in Las Vegas at the Bellagio Hotel.”

Tony Astorga
Retired CFO
Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona
Astorga recently retired from Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona where he served as the Senior Vice President, CFO & CBDO since 1988. He currently serves as chairman of the Arizona Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Foundation and is a member of the board of directors for the Arizona Community Foundation, AZHCC, ASU Foundation, CSA General Insurance Agency, Phoenix Art Museum, and US Bank Arizona.
His hope for his professional legacy: “I would like to be remembered in my profession as a CPA and CFO for being a good mentor and for helping develop my staff in their work ethic and level of growth.”
Surprising fact: “I have a sweet tooth for twinkies or that my favorite movie is ‘Planes, Trains and Automobiles’, I still laugh when I think about the movie”.

Miguel Bravo
Senior community development consultant
Arizona Public Service Company
Bravo is responsible for directing community development initiatives statewide to help serve diverse markets for APS. He also collaborates with economic development organizations to attract industry to Arizona. Bravo also serves the boards of Friendly House, Arizona Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, Latino Center at Morrison Institute, Boys Hope Girls Hope and Jobs for Arizona’s Graduates.
His hope for his professional legacy: “For conducting business with integrity, purpose, passion; and for having a conviction for public service.”
Surprising fact: “I became a US Citizen in 2007. Having grown up in Arizona, this was one of my proudest moments.”

José Cárdenas
Senior vice president and general counsel
Arizona State University
Before joining ASU in 2009, Cárdenas was chairman at Lewis & Roca, where he became the first Hispanic to serve as managing partner of a major law firm in Arizona. A Stanford Law School graduate, Cárdenas has served on many boards and commissions and has received various awards.
His hope for his professional legacy: “As a good lawyer who served his clients and community well with the utmost integrity.”
Surprising fact: Cárdenas was involved with death penalty cases for more than 30 years.

America Corrales-Bortin
Co-founder
America’s Taco Shop
Corrales-Bortin grew up Culiacán in Sinaloa, Mexico, watching her mother prepare the dishes that would become the recipes for success at America’s Taco Shop. Founded in 2008, America’s authentic carne asada and al pastor quickly built a following that has led to rapid expansion and a partnership Kahala, a franchise development company. So far in 2013, America’s has already moved into California, Texas and Maryland.
Her hope for her professional legacy: “As someone who has a passion for the food we serve at America’s Taco Shop.”
Surprising fact: “People would be surprised that I am named after a famous soccer team in Mexico.”

Gonzalo de la Melena Jr.
President and CEO
Arizona Hispanic Chamber of Commerce
In addition to leading the Hispanic Chamber, de la Melena Jr. operates the Phoenix Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA), the state’s leading advocate representing more than 100,000 minority business enterprises. De la Melena is also the Founder of edmVentures, LLC a small business investment company with holdings in Phoenix airport concessions at Sky Harbor International.
His hope for his professional legacy: “Helping small businesses succeed.”
Surprising fact: “I had the opportunity to do business in more than 30 countries before the age of 30.”

Robert Espiritu
Acquisition marketing
American Express
Espiritu’s diversified professional experience includes working for small business enterprises as well as corporate 100 businesses in the areas of sales, marketing and financial management. He has also been actively involved with various nonprofit organizations; most recently as the former chairman of the board for the Arizona Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.
His hope for his professional legacy: “Innovative and focused leader who delivers with energy and is known for building successful relationships and high performing teams.”
Surprising fact: “As a first generation American, I am passionate about helping aspiring and under-privileged youth achieve their dreams and advocating for Hispanic career advancement, education and scholarships.”

Dr. Maria Harper-Marinick
Executive vice chancellor and provost
Maricopa Community Colleges
Harper-Marinick oversees all areas of academic and student affairs, workforce development, and strategic planning. She serves on several national and local boards including ABEC and AMEPAC, which she chairs.  Originally from the Dominican Republic, Harper-Marinick came to ASU as a Fulbright Scholar.
Her hope for her professional legacy: “Passion for, and unwavering commitment to, public education as the foundation of a democratic society.”
Surprising fact: “The joy I get from driving fast cars.”

Julio Herrera
National Spanish Sales and Retention Director
Cox Communications
Herrera and his team work across markets and cross-functional departments to drive Spanish language sales and grow Cox’s Hispanic markets nationally. He also helped establish LIDER, a leadership program tailored for Hispanic team members looking for advancement opportunities in Phoenix and Southern Arizona.
His hope for his professional legacy: “Growing and improving the Hispanic customer experience and making a difference our communities.”
Surprising fact: “Spanish was my first language and I started my career in sales leadership at 18 ears old.”

Lori Higuera
Director
Fennemore Craig
Higuera defends, provides counsel and trains employers of all sizes. She’s a Southwest Super Lawyer, an employment law expert for the Arizona Republic/Arizona Business Gazette and is a recent recipient of the High-Level Business Spanish Diploma from the Madrid Chamber of Commerce.
Her hope for her professional legacy: “A skilled lawyer who elevated the practice by integrating the diverse perspectives of our community.”
Surprising fact: “I was fired from my first job as a Santa’s helper for being too social!”

Ana María López, MD, MPH, FACP
Associate dean, outreach and multicultural affairs
Professor of medicine (Tenured) and pathology, College of Medicine
Medical director, Arizona Telemedicine Program
University of Arizona
López has a passion for addressing health inequities and human suffering. From clinical research with molecular targets to health services research, her work focuses on optimizing the health of individuals and communities.
Her hope for her professional legacy: “Life is an opportunity to contribute. I hope to contribute, to make a difference.”
Surprising fact: “I love simple pleasures. Witnessing the daily miracle of the sun rising sustains me.”

Paul Luna
President and CEO
Helios Education Foundation
Luna leads Helios Education Foundation, a philanthropic organization dedicated to creating opportunities for individuals in Arizona and Florida to succeed in postsecondary education. He is the former president of Valley of the Sun United Way and has held positions with Pepsi, IBM and the Office of Governor Bruce Babbitt.
His hope for his professional legacy: “That I cared about our community and helped make it better.”
Surprising fact: “I’m seriously considering getting matching tattoos with my kids in the near future.”

Steve Macias
President and CEO
Pivot Manufacturing
Macias is a co-owner of Pivot Manufacturing, a Phoenix machine shop, chairs the Arizona Manufacturers Council, and is on the boards of the Arizona Commerce Authority and the Arizona Hispanic Chamber. He is an active proponent of manufacturing in Arizona and a proud father of three boys.
His hope for his professional legacy: “Contributed in some small way to the sustainment of manufacturing in Arizona.”
Surprising fact: “In high school, I was the school mascot – a Bronco.”

Mario Martinez II
CEO
360 Vantage
Martinez is responsible for the overall vision, strategy and execution of 360 Vantage, a leader in cloud-based sales and marketing technology solutions designed to solve the unique challenges of the mobile workforce in life sciences, healthcare and other industries.
His hope for his professional legacy: “I would most like to be remembered for truly changing the lives of our clients, employees and our community in great and meaningful ways.”
Surprising fact: “I hosted a radio show during my college years.”

Clarence McCallister
CEO
Fortis Networks, Inc.
McAllister was born in Panama and earned his master’s in electrical engineering from ASU. In 2000, he and his wife started Fortis Networks, Inc., a certified 8a and HUBzone government contractor specializing in engineering, construction and technology services.
His hope for his professional legacy: “Building a world-class organization that always exceeds our customers’ expectations.”
Surprising fact: “I did an emergency landing on a City of Mesa street.”

Rodolfo Parga, Jr.
Managing shareholder
Ryley Carlock & Applewhite
In addition to managing a law firm with 120 attorneys, Parga has been to Best Lawyers in America for the last four years. He also serves as Chairman of the Board of Chicanos Por la Causa, a leading non-profit helping advance and create economic and educational opportunities.
His hope for his professional legacy: “I want to be remembered as always trying to do the right thing and having led with integrity.”
Surprising fact: “I was bullied until age 11, which drove me not only to strengthen my body, but my resolve.”

Hector Peñuñuri
Senior planning analyst
SRP
Peñuñuri is an Arizona native and has spent most of the past 15 years in the Customer Services Division at SRP.  He has served on several boards including the Arizona Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and LISC.  He was raised in the West Valley, and currently resides in Gilbert.
His hope for his professional legacy: “A trusted and valuable team member/leader; a communicator who understands the importance of sharing knowledge to help others.”
Surprising fact: “I’m a jack of all trades – woodworker, photographer, musician, outdoorsman and a decent cook when I put my mind to it.”

Dan Puente
Owner
D.P. Electric
Puente founded D.P. Electric in 1990 out of his garage with one truck. D.P. Electric now has more than 200 employees and generated more than $30 million in revenue in 2012, making it the biggest Hispanic-owned company in Arizona.
His hope for his professional legacy: “A guy that is fair, honest, hard-working and gives back both personally and professionally.”
Surprising fact: “Professionally, that I do not have a college degree and personally, that I am a Bikram Yoga junkie.”

Marie Torres
Founder
MRM Construction Services
Torres is an Arizona native and built her business in the community that she grew up in. With more than 30 years experience in the construction field, she started MRM in 2002 and currently has more than 50 employees. The focus of her company has been in government contracting and has self performed airfield work at Luke AFB, MCAS Yuma and Davis Monthan.
Her hope for her professional legacy: “As being technically competent.”
Surprising fact: “I don’t like to drive and I am happy as a passenger – even in my own car.”

Lisa Urias
President and CEO
Urias Communications
After 15 years in international marketing and communications, Urias founded Urias Communications to address the need for advertising and PR with a uniquely multicultural focus. Now an award-winning advertising, and PR agency, Urias Communications specializes in the multicultural markets of the U.S. Southwest, with concentration on the burgeoning Hispanic market.
Her hope for her professional legacy: “Bridging the divide between corporations and the growing Hispanic community for mutual benefit and respect.”
Surprising fact: “I am a fourth-generation Arizonan whose grandfather was the first Hispanic city councilman.”

Dawn C. Valdivia
Partner, chair of the Labor & Employment Practice Group
Quarles & Brady
Valdivia is the chair of Quarles & Brady’s Labor and Employment Group in Phoenix. She regularly advises clients in all matters of labor and employment law and is skilled in complex litigation matters, including wage and hour class action litigation in Arizona and California.
Her hope for her professional legacy: “A creative problem solver, committed to her clients and to giving back to the community.”
Surprising fact: “I love adventure — sky diving, gliding, scuba diving, helicopters, etc.”

Lorena Valencia
CEO
Reliance Wire
Valencia is the founder and CEO of Reliance Wire Systems, a wire and tubing manufacturing company she founded in 2000. She is also the founder and president of Magin Corporation — an eco-friendly wood pallet alternative company — and the FRDM Foundation.
Her hope for her professional legacy: “Empowering children by building schools and libraries in impoverished countries through my FRDM Foundation.”
Surprising fact: “I put hot peppers on almost everything I eat. The hotter. the better.”

Roberto Yañez
Vice president and GM
Univision Arizona
Yañez is a 27-year broadcast television veteran, who has served 17 of those years with the Univision Television Group (UTG). Yañez has created various opportunities that helped build the station’s relationship with the community: Cadena de Gente Buena, El 34 Esta Aqui and Ya Es Hora.
His hope for his professional legacy: “Someone who used his craft to build bridges between the problem and the solution.”
Surprising fact: “Though Monday through Friday you will never see me without a suit and tie, I am most comfortable in boots, jeans and driving a pick-up truck.”

electricity

SRP Offers Free Electrical Safety Workshop

SRP is sponsoring a free Electric Safety Workshop to educate workers on the potential hazards of working near overhead and underground electrical power lines and other utilities. The workshop will focus on tree workers, landscapers and excavators as well as individuals who work around utility lines.

Instruction will be in English and Spanish.

The event will include safety presentations on overhead and underground electrical, gas and other utilities, OSHA regulations, Blue Stake procedures, trenching and shoring demonstrations, and live electrical demonstrations of what can happen when contact is made with power lines. The event will also feature presentations by the Arizona Division of Occupational Safety and Health, Arizona Public Service, Southwest Gas, Cox Communications, Arizona Blue Stake, Arizona Burn Center, Trench Shore Rentals, Asplundh Tree Expert Company and Liberty Wildlife. There will also be safety presentations including a live tree rescue and hazards involving chain saws and aerial lifts.

Participants must be 18 years or older. The workshop includes lunch and a chance to win raffle prizes. Tree workers can receive 4.5 CEUs (A/U/T/M) from the International Society of Arboriculture.

When: 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, February 23. Registration begins at 6 a.m.

Where: SRP’s PERA Club, 1 East Continental Drive in Tempe.

Where: Every year, professional tree trimmers, landscapers and excavators are killed or seriously injured in electrical contact tree-trimming and excavation accidents.  Workers also operate dangerous equipment and are vulnerable to serious injuries when working near overhead and underground electric lines and other utilities.

For more information or to register, call (602) 236-2995 or email electricsafetywksp@srpnet.com.

solar

SRP helps 4 Valley Nonprofits get Solar Systems

Thanks to the generosity of SRP EarthWise Energy customers, four Valley nonprofits will receive solar electric systems.

The Boys & Girls Clubs of the East Valley/Thunderbirds Branch in Guadalupe, Child Crisis Center in Mesa, Chrysalis Shelter for Victims of Domestic Violence in Phoenix and The Phoenix Zoo will each receive a solar system up to 20 kilowatts in size, depending on site conditions.

These nonprofits were chosen by SRP customers who voted to determine the winners. The systems will generate electricity and help the nonprofits save money on their monthly electric bills.

SRP EarthWise Energy is a voluntary program in which more than 5,000 SRP customers participate for as little as $3 per month, with 100 percent of the funds used to provide solar electric systems to Valley nonprofit organizations.  In addition to helping nonprofits save money, the program contributes to the growth of solar energy in the Valley and educates customers on the importance of renewable energy.

“We are grateful to our EarthWise customers who have provided the funds to assist these important and vital non-profit organizations,” said Lori Singleton, SRP director of Emerging Customer Programs for Solar, Sustainability and Telecom. “Thanks to their generosity, these organizations will be able to reduce their electric bill and redirect their limited dollars to the needs of their communities.”

Since 2007, the voluntary contributions paid by EarthWise Energy customers have funded projects for community-based programs including Boys & Girls Club of Metropolitan Phoenix, Hospice of the Valley, the Nina Mason Pulliam Rio Salado Audubon Center, Desert Botanical Garden and Habitat for Humanity Central Arizona.

For more information, call (602) 236-2922 or email earthwise@srpnet.com. To sign up for the EarthWise Energy program, go to www.srpnet.com/earthwise.

Desert Schools - community service and leadership award

YWCA Hosts 2013 Tribute To Leadership Gala

YWCA Maricopa County will Host its 20th annual Tribute To Leadership Gala on February 23, 2013, at the Ritz-Carlton, Phoenix at 6:00pm. Guests will be provided an elegant setting to dine and dance to the wonderful Upper East Side Big Band.

Tribute To Leadership, our largest event of the year, will honor those who have made substantial contributions to eliminating discrimination, empowering women, and serving as champions to our community. The gala provides funding to support YWCA programs throughout the year; including financial education, advocacy and awareness programs, and essential services for seniors. Please join us on February 23rd to celebrate these amazing honorees. For more information, visit www.ywcaaz.org or call 602-258-0990.

2013 Tribute to Leadership Honorees:

Jaye Perricone, PetSmart, Advocacy Leader

Pamela Overton Risoleo, Greenberg Traurig, Community Service Corporate Leader

Andy Kramer, Banner Health Foundation, Community Service Nonprofit Leader

Michael Barnard, Phoenix Theatre, Creative Arts Leader

Paul Luna, Helios Education Foundation, Education Leader

Dean Victor Coonrod, MD-MPH, Maricopa Medical Center, Health & Science Leader

Patricia Little-Upah, retired, US Army Reserve, Military or Armed Service Leader

Angela Hughey, ONE Community Media, Public Service Leader

Karen Churchard, Arizona Centennial 2012 Foundation, Centennial Leader

Diana Taurasi, Phoenix Mercury, Sports Leader

Julie Sullivan, International Foundation for Education & Self-Help, Racial Justice Leader

image003

SRP Buys Natural Gas Power Plant

Salt River Project has agreed to purchase one block of the Mesquite Generating Station located in Arlington, about 40 miles west of Phoenix.  The natural gas-fired power plant, owned by San Diego-based Sempra U.S. Gas & Power, includes two 625-megawatt (MW) combined-cycle generating blocks.  SRP is purchasing one of the blocks for $371 million and under the terms of the agreement, will operate the entire facility.

“We studied the market very carefully and determined that this purchase would provide an economic benefit to SRP and its customers,” said SRP general manager Mark Bonsall.  “While recent load growth has been fairly modest, more substantial growth is expected and this plant will position us well in the long term to meet our customer’s needs at a reasonable cost.”

The agreement is subject to approvals from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and the U.S. Department of Energy.  The companies anticipate receiving these approvals in early 2013.

According to Bonsall, SRP will save money by purchasing an existing power plant now rather than building a new and much more expensive facility in the future.
As part of the purchase agreement, Sempra and SRP will form a joint operating entity called Mesquite Power Operations, LLC that will hold the plant permits.

The Mesquite Generating Station has been in operation since 2003 in Arlington.  More than 30 people are employed at the plant and SRP anticipates hiring the existing staff while making minimal changes to accommodate normal SRP operational procedures.

SRP is the third-largest public power utility in the nation, serving more than 950,000 electric customers.

Sempra U.S. Gas & Power, LLC is a leading developer of renewable energy and natural gas solutions.  The company operates solar, wind and natural gas power plants that generate enough electricity for nearly 1 million homes, along with natural gas storage and pipelines, and distribution utilities. Sempra U.S. Gas & Power is a subsidiary of Sempra Energy (NYSE: SRE), a Fortune 500 energy services holding company with 2011 revenues of $10 billion.  The Sempra Energy companies’ nearly 17,500 employees serve about 31 million consumers worldwide.  For more information, visit www.SempraUSGP.com.

Brossart Diane final 9314 5-29-12

Valley Forward Exands its horizon

Timing is everything, even when it comes to Mother Nature.

“In 2010, we got an $85,000 grant to look at some federal issues on sustainability,” says Diane Brossart, president and CEO of Valley Forward, which brings business and civic leaders together to improve the environment and livability of Valley communities. “We were asked to target Arizona’s Congressional delegation and get them up to speed in regards to understanding a sustainability agenda for Arizona and what that meant.”

What grew from that seed was an initiative that had actually been germinating for more than a decade, Brossart says: taking the successful Marocopa County-centric Valley Forward and giving is a statewide focus. In August, Valley Forward’s board voted unanimously to to move forward with a business plan that will transition Valley Forward into Arizona Forward in January.

Brossart says the state is facing some serious issues related to the environment and the livability and vitality of Arizona’s cities and towns will be impacted by upcoming decisions related to:
* Land use planning and open space,
* A balanced multi-modal transportation system,
* Improving and maintaining healthy air quality,
* Solar and renewable energy technology,
*  Managing our water resources, and
* Protecting wilderness, parks, national monuments and other natural areas for Arizona’s tourism economy.

“As Arizona and the country recover from the Great Recession, a statewide dialogue is more important than ever,” says William F. Allison, a shareholder at Gallagher & Kennedy. “The issues impacting us – water, energy, transportation, land use – involve the entire state rather than only the Valley. Arizona Forward will provide a forum to think outside the box and beyond the Valley.”

To get Arizona Forward to have its greatest statewide impact, Brossart and her staff connected with nine companies that had influence on communities along the Sun Corridor — the stretch of freeway that connects Tucson, Phoenix, Prescott and Flagstaff — to become charter members of Arizona Forward.

“The leaders of those companies have become our tour guides as we go into Pima County and Northern Arizona,” Brossart says. She points to Kurt Wadlington, employee-owner of Sundt Construction in Tucson, for opening doors for Arizona Forward to spread its wings into Southern Arizona.

“Southern Arizona already has a very strong environmental focus, but struggles with areas that are dependent on statewide engagement from both a funding and advocacy perspective,” Wadlington says. “(Valley Forward’s) shift (to a statewide focus) will provide Southern Arizona with added resources to coordinate its future growth in the larger context of the Sun Corridor.”

Experts agree that now is the perfect time for Valley Forward to shift to a statewide focus statewide because Arizona is at a turning point, economically and environmentally.

“There are major issues that affect the state like transportation; managing resources; and protecting the wilderness, parks, and national monuments,” says Alfie Gallegos, area sales manager for Republic Services. “These are not just environmental issues, but are issues that have an effect on Arizona’s economy statewide. I think Arizona is ready to start having more positive statewide conversations about finding ways to grow our economy in a manner that can be sustained and is environmentally friendly.”

Brossart says that while Arizona has had countless groups that have focused on making their communities better, Arizona Forward will be looking to help educate legislators become the glue that brings those regional organizations together in a spirit of cooperation and unity.

“So much of our goal is to drive a political agenda to the middle and bring folks on both sides of the aisle together,” Brossart says. “The issues that we focus on are sustainability and environmental. Everybody needs clean air, clean water, open space and parks. Those are the things that make a community viable, healthy and liveable. We all want that. Those aren’t political issues. But they do fall into a political arena that sometimes clouds the issues. But if we can be a reasoning voice of balance like we have been successfully in Maricopa County, if we can bring that statewide, it will be really good for Arizona — economically and environmentally.”

Valley Forward members expect the transition to Arizona Forward to foster additional collaboration and conversation on statewide issues, bring additional viewpoints on key issues and allow for a more global conversation.

“My hope is that we can, over time, have a collective vision that regardless of our own regional filters, we’re all in this together and need to find ways to move forward as one sustainable, economically successful state,” says Iain Hamp, community affairs representative, Wells Fargo Team Member Philanthropy Group.

Brossart says one of the biggest messages Arizona Forward will be trying to communicate is that making sound decisions about issues surrounding sustainability and the environment are good for business.

“If we make a case that shows the economic impact of parks and open space on the tourism industry, the business community will take notice and they are uniquely poised to deliver of that message and be heard,” Brossart says. “Parks groupies are great and they are important. But when the business community gets involved, people listen.”

Where Arizona Forward could have its biggest economic impact is on growth industries that rely on the state’s amazing natural resources.

“It’s an exciting time to be a part of solar energy, as the clean, renewable energy source is experiencing massive growth and helping the state and country achieve greater energy independence,” says Patricia Browne, director of marketing and communications for SOLON Corporation in Tucson. “And Arizona has been at the center of this growth. This has been made possible not only by the companies developing the solutions, but by the state and local officials, Arizona-based businesses and individual residents who recognize the importance that solar plays in a number of ways such as a cleaner environment, economic development, and energy price stability. However, there are still challenges in making the adoption viable on a large scale, and Arizona Forward helps bring together the right players to help make this happen on a state level.”

Richard Mayol, communications and government relations director for Grand Canyon Trust in Flagstaff, says Arizona Forward will give members in northern Arizona the opportunity to not only have a voice in discussions that affect the state today, but in decisions that impact what Arizona will be like 20 years from now.

“We hope it will help create an economy that provides the opportunity for prosperity without sacrificing the environment,” he says, “and makes northern Arizona an even better place to live, work, and raise a family.”

And that is what Arizona Forward’s mission is all about: bringing business and civic leaders together in order to convene thoughtful public dialogue on statewide issues and to improve the environment and sustainability of Arizona.

“All areas of the state will benefit, from urban to rural and suburban areas in between due to a coordinated and planned strategy for such essential elements as affordable energy, water, transportation, affordable housing, and a wide band of employment opportunities,” says Janice Cervelli, dean of the College of Architecture and Landscape Architecture at the University of Arizona. “All geographic, economic, and environmental sectors of the state will increasingly become part of a larger, interdependent, connected system.”

GOALS OF ARIZONA FORWARD

* Establish cooperative relationships with like-minded Arizona conservation organizations and facilitate collaboration on sustainability initiatives.
* Bring business and civic leaders together to convene thoughtful public dialogue on regional issues and to improve the environment and sustainability of Arizona.
* Increase awareness of and interest in environmental issues initially in the Sun Corridor and then beyond, statewide, building on an agenda of land use and open space planning, transportation, air quality, water, and energy.
* Support efforts to promote the Sun Corridor as an economic development area incorporating sustainability and smart growth principles.
* Serve as a technical resource on environmental issues through Arizona Forward’s and Valley Forward’s diverse membership of large corporations, small businesses, municipal governments, state agencies, educational institutions and nonprofit organizations.

ARIZONA FORWARD CHARTER MEMBERS
Arizona Community Foundation
First Solar
Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold
National Bank of Arizona
SOLON Corporation
Sundt Construction
The Nature Conservancy
Total Transit
Wells Fargo

FOUNDING MEMBERS: Access Geographic, LLC; Adolfson & Peterson Construction Company; APS; Arizona Conservation Partnership; Arizona Department of Transportation; Arizona Heritage Alliance; Arizona Investment Council; Arizona State Parks Foundation; Arizona State University, Global Institute of Sustainability; Aubudon Arizona; Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona; Breckenridge Group Architects/Planners; Caliber Group; City of Tucson; Environmental Fund of Arizona; Fennemore Craig; Gabor Lorant Architects; Gammage & Burnham; Godec Randall & Associates; Grand Canyon Trust; Guided Therapy Systems; Haley & Aldrich; Intellectual Energy, LLC; John Douglas Architects; Jones Studio; Kinney Construction Services, Inc.; Lewis and Roca LLP; Logan Halperin Landscape Architecture; Pima County; RSP Architects; Southwest Gas Corporation; SRP; University of Phoenix; TEP / UNS Energy Corp.; The Greenleaf Group

recycling

APS, SRP Warn Customers of Fraud Attempts

APS and SRP want customers to stay safe this holiday season and be aware of potential fraud attempts. Both companies have received reports of individuals falsely claiming to represent APS or SRP to collect payment for electric service.

Several customers in the Phoenix metropolitan area have received telephone call from an individual who claims to represent the utility providers or makes a generic reference to the “electric or power company.”

The fraudulent caller claims the customer has an overdue bill and service will be disconnected if payment isn’t made immediately. The scam artist then asks the customer to take one of three actions:

  • Make the payment over the phone via credit card
  • Visit a payment kiosk where the caller will provide an account number to use for payment
  • Wire the money to an account via Western Union.

As a reminder, APS or SRP customer service representatives never call customers to ask for credit card numbers or personal information or to remind them of a delinquent balance. Customers are notified of delinquent balances and shut-off dates via the APS/SRP bill. Some customers also may receive text messaging, an automated dialer message and/or a door hanger.

Customers should always use their personal APS or SRP account number when using the various payment options available to them. Payments are not accepted by field personnel.
Utility representatives may not always wear uniforms with the APS or SRP logo.  However, all permanent employees are required to carry identification. On occasion, the companies use contract workers who are required to carry a letter of introduction from APS or SRP. If there ever is a question about the validity of a person claiming to be an APS or SRP representative, customers are urged to ask for an employee identification number and to call the APS Customer Care Center at (602) 371-7171 or the SRP Customer Services at 602-236-8888 to verify employee status.

If a person is misrepresenting himself/herself as a utility employee, customers should immediately call local law enforcement and the FTC at 1-877-382-4357, using reference number 401625543, if they are a victim of this fraudulent activity or receive a similar call from a scam artist.

The fake calls are being made to both English- and Spanish-speaking customers.  SRP has reported the activity to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).

APS, Arizona’s largest and longest-serving electric utility, serves more than 1.1 million customers in 11 of the state’s 15 counties. With headquarters in Phoenix, APS is the largest subsidiary of Pinnacle West Capital Corporation (NYSE:PNW).

SRP is the largest provider of electricity to the greater Phoenix metropolitan area, serving more than 950,000 customers in Maricopa and Pinal counties. SRP is also the largest supplier of raw water in the great Phoenix metropolitan area.

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SRP Proposes New East Valley Power Facilities

The growing demand for electricity in the East Valley area known as the Price Road Corridor has prompted Salt River Project to initiate a process to site new 230-kilovolt (kV) power lines and new 230-kV substations that will improve electric service reliability in the area and serve large commercial and light industrial customers in south Tempe and southwest Chandler.

The Price Road Corridor is adjacent to Price Road in south Tempe and Chandler.  There are a number of large commercial customers currently in the area that require large amounts of electricity to operate, and SRP is anticipating a significant increase in the number of businesses there in the near future.

According to SRP’s Tom Novy, the project manager, the land available for development in the corridor makes the area a power delivery “hot spot” and current transmission capacity in the area will not be sufficient to serve projected growth in the future.

The first phase planned to be in service by May 1, 2016, would improve SRP’s ability to keep pace with current and future electrical demands in the area and allow for much-needed economic growth.  The project also would provide benefits for SRP customers in a broader area by adding the infrastructure necessary to increase reliability and bring additional supplies of energy to the region.

“The industrial growth taking place in the Price Road Corridor is creating new economic development opportunities that benefit the Chandler community and the entire state,” said Mike Hummel, SRP’s chief Power System executive.  “As Arizona emerges from the recent recession, SRP can help facilitate economic growth by ensuring that the electrical infrastructure necessary for this type of development is in place and ready to serve new industrial customers.”

The Price Road Corridor 230-kV Project includes: a new single-circuit 230-kV power line to connect the Schrader Substation, located just east of Arizona Avenue and Ocotillo Road, with a new substation (RS-28) in the southern portion of the corridor; a new double-circuit 230-kV power line that will connect the Knox Substation, located north of Pecos Road west of 56th Street, with a new 230-kV substation (RS-27) in the northern portion of the Price Road Corridor.  The two new substations will be connected by a double-circuit 230-kV line.  A single-circuit 230-kV power line will also be needed between the existing Knox Substation and the Kyrene Substation, located on the northeast corner of Elliot and Kyrene roads in Tempe.

As part of the process to site the facilities, SRP will initiate an extensive public process that will include three rounds of public open houses.  The following open houses are an opportunity for the public to review informational displays and discuss the project with SRP team members:

Tempe History Museum

Tuesday, Jan. 29, 4 – 7 p.m.

809 E. Southern Avenue

Tempe

Holiday Inn

Wednesday, Jan. 30, 11 a.m. – 2 p.m.

1200 W. Ocotillo Road

Chandler

 

Holiday Inn

Wednesday, Jan. 30, 4 – 7 p.m.

1200 W. Ocotillo Road

Chandler

According to Novy, no routes for the power lines or the location for the new RS-27 substation have been determined.  He said all alternatives will be considered, including discussions with the Gila River Indian Community, for possible routes located west of the Price Road Corridor.

The public process will culminate with a hearing before the Arizona Power Plant and Transmission Line Siting Committee.  A final decision on whether to grant a Certificate of Environmental Compatibility for the project will be decided at an open meeting of the Arizona Corporation Commission.

For more information on this project and SRP, visit www.azpower.org and www.srpnet.com.

SRP is the third-largest public power utility in the nation, serving more than 950,000 customers in Maricopa and Pinal counties.

solar

SRP Selects Six Valley Nonprofits as Finalists to Receive Solar

SRP is inviting its customers to decide which nonprofits, from a list of six finalists, will receive a solar energy system. The 10-kilowatt systems will enable the nonprofits to help offset the cost of electricity and save money on their monthly electric bills. The savings they see will help them direct more funds to the communities they serve.

The six nonprofit finalists are:

  • The Boys & Girls Club of the East Valley/Thunderbirds Branch
  • Child Crisis Center
  • Chrysalis Shelter for Victims of Domestic Violence
  • Mercy Housing Southwest
  • The Phoenix Zoo
  • VALLEYLIFE

Between now and December 31, SRP customers can vote online at www.srpnet.com/votesolar or at various events in which SRP participates around the Valley. The top vote-getters will be announced in January.

SRP EarthWise Energy is a voluntary program in which more than 5,000 SRP customers participate for as little as $3 per month, with 100 percent of the funds used to provide solar photovoltaic (PV) systems to Valley nonprofit organizations.  In addition to helping nonprofits save money, the program contributes to the growth of solar energy in the Valley and educates customers on the importance of renewable energy.

“We are grateful to our EarthWise customers who provide the funds to assist these important and vital non-profit organizations,” said Lori Singleton, SRP director of Emerging Customer Programs for Solar, Sustainability and Telecom. “Thanks to their generosity, these organizations are able to reduce their electric bill and redirect their limited dollars to the needs of their communities.”

Since 2007, the voluntary fees paid by EarthWise Energy customers have funded projects for community-based programs including Boys & Girls Club of Metropolitan Phoenix, Hospice of the Valley, the Nina Mason Pulliam Rio Salado Audubon Center, Desert Botanical Garden and Habitat for Humanity Central Arizona.

For more information, call (602) 236-2922 or email earthwise@srpnet.com. To sign up for the EarthWise Energy program, go to www.srpnet.com/earthwise.