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Beartooth Electric Cooperative Transparency

Thank you to Eleanor Guerrero for her Dec. 7, 2017, Guest Editorial: BEC should stay transparent. In reading this article, it occurred to me that this is probably not what Beartooth members want to be reading regarding the potential for lack of transparency at their Cooperative. I guess from my perspective as Board President; nothing could be further from the truth. Transparency has become one of the core values of Beartooth Electric and our members fully expect it. Transparency is one of the key factors that allowed Beartooth to overcome the Southern debacle of years ago.
The Board and Manager of Beartooth recently completed a very successful two-day Strategic Planning Workshop that will set a very clear path for Beartooth in forthcoming years. One of the key outcomes of that workshop was to renew our Pledge to our members. Let me share that Pledge with you.
The Trustees and Employees of Beartooth Electric Cooperative Pledge to:
Listen, understand, communicate and act in the best interest of all members.
Solicit and encourage member involvement.
Adhere to the highest ethical standards of trust and respect.
Operate our business in a financially sound and transparent manner.
Perform our work in a manner that is environmentally and socially responsible.
Encourage the wise use of energy, and Follow the Seven Cooperative Principles.
The Board and Management of Beartooth unanimously support this Pledge.
Communication will be key to understanding the level of transparency we provide at Beartooth. Going forward you will actually see more communication in a couple of new formats. You’ve heard it before; communication is a two-way street. Members need to be engaged in their Cooperative and provide feedback, participate in the various Committees, attend board meetings and continue to communicate with their elected board trustees and staff.
The Communication Committee, chaired by board member Richard Nolan is working with members, General Manager Owens and staff to take this input to develop a multi-channel communication plan. This plan includes print media: the monthly Rural Montana magazine, billing inserts, and news media releases; electronic media: the BEC website, Facebook page and bi-monthly Connections email; and community Town Hall meetings. New communication vehicles including direct mail, new member welcome materials and member engagement initiatives. When you look at the year ahead--a new metering system, investigation of new rate designs and exploration of renewable energy options sends a clear message to all of us to communicate and communicate often.
Pre- and post-board meeting information may be obtained at the BEC office, online at our website or directly from your trustees or general manager. Members who embrace email communications may sign up to receive the Beartooth Connections bi-monthly emails on our website home page at These emails contain meeting information with links to information like the board book containing committee reports, the latest financials, staff reports, board action items and current news topics. I would encourage you to get on our email distribution list.
In addition, to better understand member energy usage, desired energy programs, interest in community solar and standard operating data, a member survey is planned during first quarter 2018. This will be a telephone survey with online option conducted by the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association’s Market Research Services.
In closing, let me clear up a little confusion regarding the next BEC Board of Trustees Meeting, it is scheduled for Tuesday, Jan. 9 at the BEC office to commence at 12noon. However, there is a Finance/Risk Management Committee meeting scheduled on Thursday, Dec. 14 at the BEC office, also scheduled to commence at 12 noon. The agenda is the 2018 Budget Review and 3rd Quarter Financial Review.

Submitted by
Julie A. Lindgren
BEC Board President
Red Lodge


Upcoming Events

  • Friday, May 24, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Rock Creek Group meets Tuesdays and Saturdays at 8 a.m. and Wednesdays and Fridays at 7 p.m. at Calvary Church, 9 N Villard, Red Lodge.
  • Monday, May 27, 2019 - 7:00am
    *American Legion Carbon County Post 17 Memorial Day schedule, May 27 7 a.m. Breakfast at Red Lodge Café 8:30 a.m. Memorial Service at Belfry Cemetery 9:30 a.m. Memorial Service at Bearcreek Cemetery 10:30 a.m. Parade through Red Lodge.  10:15 a.m. Meet at the corner of 14th and Broadway. Following parade there will be a lunch  at the Red Lodge Elk’s Lodge 11 a.m. Memorial Service at Red Lodge Cemetery 1:30 p.m. Parade in Roberts followed by Memorial Service at Roberts Cemetery. For further information contact Kenneth Beggs, Commander Carbon County Post 17 at   *The Clarks Fork American Legion Post 71 and the Joliet VFW Post 5748 will be doing Memorial Day services Monday, May 27. Rev. Robert Reed of the Joliet Baptist  Church will be the Speaker of the day.   The schedule for the day will be: 9 a.m. Services at the Gebo Cemetery. 9:30 a.m. March through Fromberg Main St. 10 a.m.   Services at Rockvale Cemetery 11 a.m. Services at Joliet Cemetery 11:30 a.m. March through Joliet Main St. A potluck lunch will be held at the  Joliet Community Center following the services.  Everyone is welcome to come. Any veterans who would like to help who haven’t been contacted can show up at the Gebo Cemetery at 8:45 a.m. Memorial Day or call Rich Pierce at 962-3320 or Jody Stene 962-3779.  
  • Monday, May 27, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Joliet Group meets at the Community Center Monday at 7 p.m.
  • Tuesday, May 28, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Now Group meets at the Bridger United Methodist Church, 222 W. Broadway (west entrance of church) Tuesday at 7 p.m.
  • Thursday, May 30, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Meets every Thursday, 7 p.m. – 8 p.m. at the Red Lodge Area Community Foundation, 122 S. Hauser. It is open to all. 425- 1755.
  • Thursday, May 30, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Clarks Fork Group meets at St. Joseph’s Catholic Hall, north end of Montana Avenue, Thursday at 7 p.m.

The Carbon County News

Street Address:

11 N. Broadway, Red Lodge, MT 59068

Mailing Address:

P.O. Box 970, Red Lodge, MT 59068

Phone: 406-446-2222

Fax: 406-446-2225

Toll-Free: 800-735-8843

Open: Monday-Friday, from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.