Manager’s Message

Manager's Message

Manager’s Message – October 2023

Roger Kline headshotNorthern Wasco County PUD (NWCPUD) celebrates Public Power Week October 1 through 7, joining the American Public Power Association and 2,000 other community-owned, not-for-profit electric utilities that collectively provide electricity to 49 million Americans. This year, we are focusing on how public power utilities work to ensure reliable, affordable, sustainable and customer-focused service to our community.

To mark Public Power Week, I would like to share a few tips on how to save energy and money in your home as we build for the future:

  • According to the Alliance to Save Energy, the average U.S. home uses 70 lightbulbs. Even though modern bulbs are energy efficient, you should still turn them off when they aren’t in use.
  • Swap out old incandescent bulbs for new LED bulbs. According to the Department of Energy, residential LEDs—especially Energy Star-rated products—use at least 75% less energy and last up to 25 times longer than incandescent lighting.
  • Heating and cooling your home uses a lot of energy. Set your thermostat lower in the winter and higher in the summer to save energy and money on your power bill.
  • Unplug appliances when you aren’t using them. Even when they aren’t being used, they sometimes draw phantom power, which wastes energy.
  • Your home’s water heater is a big energy user. Make sure to use cold water when you can, and turn off the hot water while you scrub your hands.
  • Ask us about a home energy audit. Energy-efficiency experts can use special equipment to find things around your home—such as air leaks—that cost you unnecessary energy and money.

We know that using energy wisely to lower monthly electric bills is important to Oregonians. Even as NWCPUD builds for the future, we encourage our customers to do their part to help save energy. While we share these tips during Public Power Week, we hope our community will keep an eye on energy efficiency all year-round as we work to provide a reliable, safe, affordable and renewable power supply.

NWCPUD offers a variety of programs to help you use energy wisely. Visit the Northern Wasco County PUD’s website for more information.

Roger Kline

Manager's Message

Manager’s Message – September 2023


Roger Kline headshotI am happy to report your elected board of directors continues to support staff’s and my recommendation to authorize the sale of municipal bonds to help us complete some greatly needed infrastructure upgrades and new construction projects for you, our customers. The investment market for bonds continues to be favorable, and accomplishing this work prior to catastrophic failure is important for many reasons.

The rehabilitation and construction of electric infrastructure is necessary as the ways people use electricity continue to evolve. Transportation electrification and the transition of home heating and cooking to electricity from other sources have profound impacts across the nation. Locally, we are increasingly dependent on our safe, reliable and environmentally responsible power system.

We are also starting a transition to a new enterprise computer system that allows us to better serve you. This is intended as a more behind-the-scenes transition, with more communication to you when specific actions are requested, such as downloading a new smart device application or creating a new web login when we get to those key milestones next year. This is exciting for us, as we will be able to serve you better.

Lastly, as we approach September—designated Emergency Preparedness Month—we want to bring your attention to an important event. There is a preparedness event Saturday, September 16, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Mid-Columbia Fire and Rescue at 1400 West Eighth Street, The Dalles. It is a valuable opportunity to bolster your emergency readiness, and we encourage you to participate.

Best regards,
Manager Roger Kline

Manager's Message

Manager’s Message – July 2023


Roger Kline headshotWe are excited to invite our customers and Wasco County community members to join us Tuesday, August 1, for a fun National Night Out at The Dalles City Park. This event is an exciting gathering of neighbors, community organizations and public service agencies to celebrate and strengthen our community bonds.

National Night Out is a nationwide initiative that encourages community engagement, crime prevention and collaboration between residents and local public services. Northern Wasco County People’s Utility District is committed to fostering a strong sense of community and creating opportunities for neighbors to connect. This event is a perfect embodiment of our vision.

Participating community partners include The Dalles Police Department, Wasco County Sheriff ’s Office and Mid-Columbia Fire & Rescue. Their presence at the event provides an excellent opportunity for community members to interact, engage and get to know the dedicated individuals who work tirelessly to ensure our safety and well-being.

NWCPUD firmly believes in the power of community collaboration and the positive impact it can have on our neighborhood. By connecting with one another and working hand in hand with our local public service agencies, we can create a safer, more united and resilient community for all.

Join us as we come together to make a difference and build a stronger future for Wasco County. Let’s celebrate our neighborhoods and forge meaningful relationships that will continue to thrive long after the evening ends.

Best to all,
Manager Roger Kline

Manager's Message

Manager’s Message – May 2023

Roger Kline headshot

Northern Wasco County PUD recognizes Electrical Safety Month every May, but our workers know the importance of practicing safety year-round. From PUD crews to our consumers, everyone has a part in prioritizing safety.

According to Electrical Safety Foundation International, thousands of people in the United States are critically injured or electrocuted due to electrical fires and accidents in their homes. Many of these accidents are preventable. Electricity is a necessity, and it powers our daily lives. But we know firsthand how hazardous electricity can be because we work with it daily.

Electricity is an integral part of modern life. Given the prevalence of electrical devices,
tools and appliances, I would like to pass along a few practical electrical safety tips.

Frayed wires are a dangerous threat. Power cords can become damaged or frayed from age, heavy use or excessive current flow. Replace damaged, frayed or cut power cords, as they could cause a shock when handled.

Avoid overloading circuits. Circuits can only cope with a limited amount of electricity. Overloading happens when you draw more electricity than a circuit can safely handle by having too many devices running on one circuit.

Label circuit breakers to understand your home’s circuits. For homes more than 40
years old, contact a qualified electrician if you wish to install multiple large appliances
that use large amounts of electricity.

Use extension cords properly. Never plug an extension cord into another extension cord. It could lead to overheating, creating a potential fire hazard. Don’t exceed the wattage of the cord. Doing so risks overloading the cord and starting a fire. Rather than using extension cords as permanent solutions, contact a licensed electrician to install additional outlets.

Talk with your children about playing it safe around electricity. Help them be aware of overhead power lines near where they play outdoors.

Our priority is keeping power flowing to your home or business 24/7, 365 days a year. Equally important is keeping our community safe around electricity. Contact us for additional electrical safety tips or if you would like us to provide a safety demonstration at your school or community event.

Best to all,

Manager Roger Kline 

Manager's Message

Manager’s Message – April 2023

The Power Behind Your Power


Roger Kline headshotLineworker Appreciation Day is April 18. During April, if you see a lineworker, please pause to say thank you to the power behind your power. Let them know you appreciate their hard work to keep the lights on, regardless of the conditions.

Lineworkers serve on the front line of our nation’s energy needs. This month, Northern Wasco County People’s Utility District, along with other electric utilities across the country, will honor the brave men and women who work hard to keep the lights on.

Line crews work around the clock, sometimes in difficult and dangerous conditions, to keep power flowing to our local communities. Whether restoring power after a major storm or maintaining critical infrastructure to our electric system, lineworkers are at the heart of our utility.

When a storm hits, lineworkers set aside their personal priorities because Mother Nature doesn’t work around holidays, vacations and birthdays. A service-oriented mentality is one of the many admirable characteristics of an electric utility lineworker.

NWCPUD is proud to honor the lineworkers who maintain more than 690 miles of power lines throughout the 87 square miles of our service territory.

We invite all our customer-owners to take a moment and thank a lineworker for the important work they do. On April 18, you can use #ThankALineworker on social media to show your support for the brave men and women who power our lives.

Best to all,
Manager Roger Kline

Manager's Message

Manager’s Message – March 2023

Connecting With Your PUD


Roger Kline headshotA customer recently raised a concern with the timeliness of the paper billing system. Since 2011, we have worked with a billing vendor to send paper statements to customers who choose to receive their communication that way. The vendor, who is outside the local area, sends those paper statements through the United States Postal Service.

Bills haven’t been sent from the local PUD office for more than a decade, and we don’t see this changing. We encourage customers to use electronic billing, auto-payment withdrawal, our website, smart app or even the telephone if they wish to contact us regarding billing or anything else. The lobby is open from 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday for those who wish to do business in person.

Northern Wasco County PUD strives to ensure affordability of the near-zero carbon-based electricity we provide. To accomplish this and be an efficient organization, we make choices on your behalf in the best interests of the district and community.

If you don’t receive a bill, please get in touch with us. We are a locally controlled, not-for-profit utility. It isn’t our business practice to disconnect your service because your bill was late, you didn’t receive it or for any reason other than we couldn’t find a workable solution together. That’s one of the many values of being served by public power and a consumer-owned utility.

I want to thank the customer who raised the concern. We will keep striving to improve the things that are in our direct control and otherwise.

Best to all,

Manager Roger Kline 

Manager's Message

Manager’s Message – February 2023


Roger Kline headshotNorthern Wasco County PUD strives to ensure affordability of the near-zero carbon-based electric service it provides.

Your locally elected board of directors, staff and I attentively monitor the actions in Salem and Washington, D.C., to see how any proposed legislative action may affect us and the provision of safe, reliable and environmentally responsible electric service we all depend upon.

We find it important to engage in the legislative process early to try to influence where we can on your behalf. Whether it relates to environmental attributes of our hydroelectric systems, fish and wildlife recovery programs, infrastructure reinvestment, income-qualified customer support or even cybersecurity, we have a stake in ensuring unintended consequences are not realized.

Visit our website to learn more about our various programs. More information is also available in the board of directors’ meeting agenda and attachments.

Best to all,

Manager Roger Kline 

Manager's Message

Manager’s Message – January 2023

A New Year, Many New Opportunities

Roger Kline headshotHappy New Year to all of you!

We hope everyone had the opportunity to enjoy precious time with family and friends during the holidays. I hope you were kept safe and warm in your homes and businesses by the electricity we work diligently to provide on your behalf.

Northern Wasco County PUD recently earned the American Public Power Association’s Smart Energy Provider designation. In fact, we were the first utility in Oregon to do so! This is a testament to the values of our community as much as anything else.

Thank you for your commitment to the delivery of environmentally responsible energy sourced from our local hydroelectric resources, energy conservation and overall sustainable utility practices. Read more about your PUD on our About Us page.

As we start 2023, we have new lobby hours at 2345 River Road. The building is open Monday through Thursday from 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Opening earlier and staying open a bit later is in response to customers who want to interact with us in person but had trouble getting to the office during our former hours. With the drastic increased use of remote payment and interactive tools, this was a good balance for the minimal foot traffic we had been receiving on Fridays, too.

You can still reach someone 24 hours a day, seven days a week at (541) 296-2226 to report outages, make payments or seek general information.

Thank you for your continued trust and support as we work hard on your behalf now and throughout 2023.

Remember, our board meetings are open to the public. We always welcome visitors.

Peace and a joyous new year to all,

Manager Roger Kline 

Manager's Message

Manager’s Message – December 2022

Happy Holidays From Your Dedicated PUD

Roger Kline headshotGreetings,

As I reflect on this past year, I appreciate the people with whom I have the pleasure of working and serving each day. People keep the power flowing, and we are primarily here to serve them.

On that note, your people’s utility district is governed by a dedicated and compassionate board of directors. As we bid a fond farewell to Directors Howard Gonser and Connie Karp, we reflect on their almost 40 years of combined service. We appreciate their hard work and dedication serving our community.

We are equally appreciative and ready to welcome new Directors Scott Taylor and Dan Hammel to the district. We look forward to supporting them with knowledge transfer and whatever else they need to best represent their constituents as PUD directors.

The policy and regional work the board supports and participates in has provided us a positive vision for the future. The performance indicators they monitor continue to illustrate the excellence of the district. We accomplish all this work on your behalf safely and with the utmost dedication. Of that, I am very proud and appreciative.

Consider this my usual plug for energy audits and conservation measures as well. We strive to offer programs that everyone can use to lower their energy consumption and bills. Let me emphasize: Energy consumption—the amount you use—drives the amount of your bill. We strive to work with every customer if the need arises to make payment arrangements or provide other support. Please communicate with us during times of need. We want you to be safe and warm in your homes and businesses.

Best to all and happy holidays,

Roger Kline

Manager's Message

Manager’s Message – August 2022

The Importance of the Lower Snake River Dams

Cyndi Gentry headshotYou may have noticed the focus on the lower Snake River dams on our social media lately. In the past month, multiple studies have been released regarding the feasibility of removing these important dams. I am happy to share the links to these reports with anyone who emails me.

  • Washington Sen. Patty Murray and Washington Gov. Jay Inslee released “Lower Snake River Dams: Benefit Replacement Draft Report.”
  • The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) released a draft report, “Rebuilding Interior Columbia Basin Salmon and Steelhead.”
  • The Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) released “BPA Lower Snake River Dams Power Replacement Study.”
  • Northwest RiverPartners released “Lower Snake River Dams Power Supply Replacement Analysis.” As your PUD, we would like to share a summary of important information:
  • The decline in fish returns is seen in both free-flowing rivers and rivers with dams. The United Nation’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change believes this is due to warming ocean conditions, and NOAA agrees.
  • Given currently available technologies, removing the lower Snake River dams would require grid operators to rely more heavily on carbon-based sources to maintain grid reliability, adding millions of metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions to the atmosphere, doing further damage to the environment.
  • Given existing technologies, replacing the dams with a carbon-free portfolio could cost as much as $76 billion. Our customers’ rates could increase by as much as 65% under this scenario.
  • While our focus is on the energy ramifications, we also recognize the significant impacts to flood control, irrigation, transportation of goods and recreation should the dams be breached.

We must continue to offer the essential public service of electricity in a reliable, affordable and environmentally responsible way. A “ready, fire, aim” approach to breaching dams and removing hydropower does not meet the responsibility standard.

We will continue to reach out to our state and federal leaders. We encourage you to do so, whatever your views on this issue. If we cannot have the conversations, we cannot solve the problem. We can only create new ones.

Cyndi Gentry
Corporate Services Director