I was glad to find that IID decided to follow up on my proposed 2017 resolutions, but don’t think the approach will work.
Recently I received a letter from IID asking about the suggested resolutions, indicating an investigator was following up. Sure enough, I was contacted for an interview that I politely declined, since those who confidentially shared with me believe it could result in their firing. I suggested if the investigator really wanted to get to the bottom of allegations, all employees be given a bullet-proof whistle blower status. And, employees who have left in the last 18 months be contacted, also, and those receiving remuneration to exit IID be exempt from any non-disclosure agreement.
I think this is the only way to drill down accurately on the facts. Those who shared with me were not only concerned about IID, I believe they were truly scared. For this reason, I also think the interview results should be given directly to the President of the Board, Bruce Kuhn, who has a long, proven history of honesty and concern for employees and the IID.
Many of the best energy employees have already left for better positions, retired, or will soon find better jobs outside the Valley. For this reason, I think IID faces a critical, uphill battle to efficiently manage the Valley’s water and energy resources. And, I’ve already provided a pinnacle of problems and troublesome issues, so it is up to IID to interview its executive team, department managers, and employees to get to the facts, and make IID a “diamond utility” again. I hope this new investigation will drill down to expose the truth, and lead to productive solutions. If IID is incapable of conducting a credible investigation, then I suggest that the ratepayers insist that county, state, or federal authorities be contacted to assist in the investigation.
As a final comment, I’ve attached a couple of paragraphs, excerpted from an oft referred to white paper I wrote over a decade ago, that apply as much today as then:
“Living in a somewhat remote area it would seem necessary to have a management group that has to take ownership for its decisions. To do this they must be rooted in the community and have to live with their decisions. Managers who come from the outside are totally unprepared for what they find. Even though they may have extensive experience and some concept of what needs to be done, they do not understand the dynamics of the community nor the inner workings of the IID well enough to plan and implement the necessary controls,
The best way to fix the problem permanently is to select qualified managers who are familiar with the company and know its (electric) operations from the ground up. They should know where the gaps in productivity are; they should know how to positively impact the culture; and they should know how to motivate people to work in a structured environment. They should also have an excellent understanding of finances, control systems and the checks & balances necessary to plan and control the overall environment. These managers must also be loyal to the valley and IID, thinking more of the people and less of themselves, thereby not profiting individually from their actions. Although the solution must be from the bottom up, it requires committed top down support; no exceptions.”