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APPA offers governance training; new course on improving governance effectiveness for utility policymakers and executives this May in Anaheim

From the March 20, 2013 issue of Public Power Daily

Originally published March 20, 2013

By Heidi Lambert
Manager, Education

APPA is offering two in-depth courses for policymakers in May at the Spring Education Institute in Anaheim, Calif.: Electric Utility Industry Overview, May 6, and a Public Utility Governance Workshop, May 7-8.

These courses are designed to provide a comprehensive introduction to the duties, responsibilities and processes of electric utility governance and policy-setting. They are geared for newly elected or appointed policymakers, as well as experienced policy officials and staff who work with governing boards. These classes can also be applied to APPA’s new Public Power Governance Certificate Program.

The one-day Electric Utility Industry Overview course will provide a broad, non-technical overview of how the components of an electricity system function together to provide reliable, environmentally sustainable service to customers. The course covers generation, transmission, substations, distribution, reliability, customer service and long-term planning, plus legislative and regulatory issues facing the industry. The class will be led by Wallace Barron, president of Barron & Associates Corporate Solutions.

In the newly updated Public Utility Governance Workshop: Improving Governance Effectiveness, policymakers will learn about their legal duties, fiduciary responsibilities and policy development and implementation processes that constitute effective utility governance. Utility chief executives and senior staff who interact regularly with boards and councils, also will benefit from this course, which will cover the following topics:

•  Public power governance models and structures;
•  Distinguishing between board and management authorities and responsibilities;
•  Key elements in effective board-management relations;
•  Methods for evaluating governing board performance;
•  Major policy issues facing the electric utility industry;
•  Assessing the long-term sustainability of the public power business model;
•  Setting the strategic direction and priorities for your utility;
•  Methods for measuring utility performance;
•  Identifying key performance areas and key performance indicators;
•  Using metrics, dashboards and scorecards and other metrics to communicate utility performance; and
•  The characteristics of high performing boards and councils.

This class will be led by APPA Senior Vice President Jeff Tarbert.

Classes will be held at the Sheraton Park hotel in Anaheim. There is a $100 discount for those who attend more than one course or who attend with a colleague. There is a $50 discount for registering before April 15.

The Spring Education Institute also will feature courses on accounting, cost of service and rate design, financial planning, maintenance of high-voltage electrical systems, and overhead distribution systems; as well as two week-long certificate programs on public power leadership and energy efficiency. This event is co-sponsored by the Southern California Public Power Association.

For more information, visit and click on "courses and workshops" or contact Meghan Riley at 202/467-2919 or


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