Public Information Meeting

Stiles Hydroelectric Project (FERC No. 1981) Machickanee Flowage Drawdown

Press Release

Oconto Electric Cooperative (OEC) will be hosting a public information meeting to provide the public with information about the proposed drawdown of the Machickanee Flowage.  The meeting will be held on June 15, 2021, 1 PM, at the Stiles Town Hall, located at 5718 Watercrest Road, Lena, WI 54139. 

OEC is planning a temporary five-foot drawdown at the Machickanee Flowage upstream of the Stiles Hydroelectric Project (Project).  The purpose of the drawdown is management of aquatic invasive species, excessive plant growth, and consolidation of flowage substrate for the purpose of improvements to navigation.

The drawdown is scheduled to begin the week of July 5, 2021, weather dependent and following regulatory approval.  The water level of the flowage will be lowered over approximately 10 to 14 days at an average rate of 3 to 6 inches per day (depending on rainfall).  Once the maximum drawdown of five feet is reached, the water level will be maintained at this level for approximately 70 days.  Upon drawdown completion, the flowage will be refilled over approximately 10 days to a level within the normal operational range.  The total duration of the project is planned for approximately three months. 

Public foot traffic in the exposed areas may pose a public safety risk.  The public is asked to stay away from the exposed river/flowage bed.   Additionally, picking items off the bed of the river, and disturbing sediment may require permits from the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources.  The public boat landing will be closed until the flowage is returned to normal water levels. 

Please contact OEC at 920-846-2816 if you have any questions about this project.

Click here to view slideshow from the meeting.

Information on aquatic invasive species is available on the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources website:

https://dnr.wi.gov/topic/Invasives/

Now Accepting Applications for “Change” Matters Grant

Community Change is a project of Oconto Electric Cooperative. Members can sign up to have their electric bills rounded up to the next whole dollar, with the extra money going into the Community Change fund. In addition, due to the generosity of the former Bay Lakes Cooperative, Community Change has additional funding available for this special grant. To be considered, an organization should show through this grant application how an innovative idea for funding could provide far-reaching enhancement for a neighborhood or community. Grant(s) will be awarded to projects being done in the footprint of the former Bay Lakes territory and the current Oconto Electric service territory. Request not to exceed $4,000 (grant total could be split based on the nature and scope of applications received). Grant application deadline is March 1, 2021.

Applications can be found here.

Financial Assistance Available

Have you fallen on hard times because of the coronavirus? Trying to keep up with the bills and other finances can be really stressful.

There are local county offices and other agencies that may be able to help you with financial assistance.

Oconto County DHHS 920-834-7000
Shawano County DHS 715-526-4740
Marinette County HHS 715-732-7740
Menominee County HHSD 715-799-3861
St. Vincent de Paul 920-604-2320
Salvation Army 920-887-5352

Assistance resource website: www.homeenergyplus.wi.gov

OEC is committed to its members and we look forward to working with you during these trying times.

COVID-19 Small Business Guide

As COVID-19 continues to impact our community, it is causing a lasting economic impact that cannot be fully quantified at this time. Oconto Electric Co-op knows that small businesses throughout our service territory will be greatly impacted as a result of this crisis. Given this reality, OEC offers this resource guide to help you through these trying times.

https://ocontoelectric.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/04/Small-Business-Guide.docx

Notice of Unclaimed Capital Credit Money

The following members or former members of Oconto Electric Cooperative, 7479 REA Road, Oconto Falls, WI 54154, have unclaimed capital credit money at the cooperative. If this money is not claimed by January 30, 2020, the money shall be forfeited to the Oconto Electric Education Fund and will be used for scholarships or other charitable purposes as designated be the cooperative board of directors. The listing of names with last known addresses can be found by clicking here.

To claim this money, call Oconto Electric Cooperative at 800-472-8410 during regular business hours. The co-op will require some form of identity verification. 

Making a Difference in Oconto County Oconto

Electric Co-op Employees distribute $17,000

Oconto Falls, WI; October 4, 2019 –October is National Cooperative Month, what a great time for Oconto Electric Cooperative (OEC) employees to demonstrate Co-op principle number seven: commitment to community.

OEC employees worked all year to raise $9,500. CoBank, one of the co-op’s lenders, also donated $7,500 as part of its Sharing Success Matching Grant program. 

Employees were able to present $8,500 to Oconto Falls Law Enforcement. They recently obtained an armored vehicle through the US Military at no cost. The armored vehicle is being funded strictly through fundraising and grants, at no cost to the local tax payers. The plan is that all local departments can utilize the armored vehicle as a rescue vehicle in the event that there is a victim or downed officer. At this time, there is no such vehicle in Oconto County. If there is a situation, they currently depend on Marinette or Brown County for assistance. 

Oconto County Commission on Aging, Inc. also received $8,500. They have been operating their Oconto County Elderly Nutrition Program (Meals on Wheels) since 1980. Good nutrition is critical to good health. Poor nutrition is the greatest threat to an older adult’s independence. This program is funded by state and federal grants and contributions from participants. The funds they were given are going towards a new delivery van. 

Since 2004, OEC employees have awarded $113,000 to charities and organizations.

Ruth Carriveau, Executive Director of Oconto County Commission on Aging, Inc., and Oconto Falls Police Chief Brad accept money from Oconto Electric employees.

Are you a sophomore or junior that would like to win a trip to Washington D.C.?

NRECA Youth Tour of Washington, D.C.

June 14-20, 2019

Trip of a lifetime for sons and daughters of co-op members

Apply Today!

Oconto Electric is pleased to choose one delegate to represent our local co-op at the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA) Youth Tour in Washington, D.C. The trip is hosted by NRECA and all expenses are paid by Oconto Electric, according to our cooperative principles to support youth and community.

More than 1,500 high school students from across the country gather for a week in June in our nation’s capitol to learn about cooperatives, the rural electric program, U.S. government, democracy and history. Youth Tour delegates meet congressional leaders and tour our national monuments, Arlington National Cemetery and the Smithsonian Museums.

Any current high school sophomore or junior whose parent or guardian is a residential member of Oconto Electric Cooperative is eligible. (Residential is defined as having the primary residence within OEC’s service territory.)

Applications can be picked up at the OEC office in Oconto Falls or click here. Applications must be submitted on or before January 2, 2019. Applications received after January 2, 2019, will not be considered.