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Board Member Training

Please review the sections below to become familiar with the NOPEC model and resources available to you as a board member.

Congratulations on your election to the NOPEC Board of Directors

NOPEC serves 240 member communities in 19 counties consisting of more than 950,000 household and small business accounts.

In addition to guiding the organization, our Board members also fill the role of NOPEC Brand Ambassadors in their county. Brand Ambassadors positively represent the NOPEC brand and help increase brand awareness within your county and prospective communities as well.

Board Member Requirements

  • Attend 7 board meetings each year and the General Assembly in November. A schedule of the 2022 Board Meetings is provided here.
  • Prior to each board meeting, you will receive a board packet electronically. Please review those materials before the board meeting.
  • Each board member is requested to serve on at least one board committee. A list of board committees is available here.

 

The NOPEC Board of Directors is made up of one representative from each of the 19 counties in the NOPEC service area.

MEET THE BOARD

Informational Board Materials

NOPEC's mission is to advocate, educate, and negotiate for our member communities. As a not-for-profit organization, we negotiate for lower energy rates and better terms and conditions. We educate residents and customers in member communities on how they can conserve energy and save even more on their energy bills. And we advocate for consumer-friendly energy legislation at both the state and federal level.

Since 2001, we've saved Ohio consumers hundreds of millions of dollars on their energy costs. We've also awarded over $34 million in community energy-efficiency grants.

 

The leadership team at NOPEC has identified the Core Values that every person affiliated with the organization should exhibit. These values include:

  • Confident Leader & Thinker
  • Humble & Flexible
  • Driven Team Player
  • Smart & Intelligent
  • Integrity

NOPEC's purpose is to serve member communities and consumers.

NOPEC's niche is to aggregate, educate and advocate to maximize membership value.

Unlike the many private, for-profit companies marketing in Ohio, NOPEC is a non-profit public aggregation of local governments with no goal other than delivering both savings and stability to the consumers we represent. We are concerned with a long-term approach to the energy market, as well as short-term savings. NOPEC recognizes that long-term savings for customers will result from regulatory changes and is dedicated to representing the interest of NOPEC member communities and their residents in seeking those changes.

Private, for-profit energy suppliers are more focused on short-term offers. Their positions on regulatory changes and laws are often aimed at their own bottom lines than the interests of the consumers.

Each board member is required to review and sign NOPEC's Ethics Policy, Fraud Policy, and IT Policy. You will receive these forms during your orientation.

NOPEC reimburses you for your mileage to attend NOPEC meetings, committee meetings or other NOPEC business functions. The reimbursement forms are available for download below. Please return the filled out forms to Monique Blair for reimbursement at mblair@nopec.org

Monthly Expense and Mileage Form

Board members are expected to attend all scheduled meetings. If the board member is unable to attend a scheduled meeting, one-week prior notice should be provided to the Executive Director for the absence to be considered excused. A quorum must exist in order for a meeting to take place, requiring a minimum of 7 board members to be in attendance. Like other government meetings, we use Roberts Rules of Order.

Before the Meeting
You will receive a board packet electronically. The packet will include the meeting agenda, minutes from the past meeting for review, and resolutions to be voted on during the meeting.

The finance committee has a conference call the Monday prior to the board meeting to review financial reports, disbursements and resolutions for disbursements over $3,000.

At the Meeting
Meetings begin promptly at 9:30 a.m. You will have a designated seat on the dais. Board meetings are taped, so you will need to make sure your microphone is turned on before you speak. At the first meeting of the year, the chairman and the vice-chairman are elected, and committee assignments are chosen.

Meeting agendas usually include:

  • Call to Order
  • Approval of previous meeting's minutes
  • Finance Report
  • Resolutions
  • Electric, Natural Gas, or Re-regulation Updates
  • Staff Updates
  • Executive Director's Report
  • Adjournment
  • Executive Session

Watch the following videos for a better understanding of NOPEC's history and how NOPEC came to be:

NOPEC's Relationship Management Team works with communities and guides them through the aggregation process. We help community leaders put an issue on the ballot, so residents can vote on whether they'd like their community to adopt a government opt-out natural gas or electric aggregation program. We provide sample legislation language and work with community leaders to answer resident's questions. NOPEC also attends two public meetings where community members can ask questions about NOPEC's governmental opt-out energy aggregation programs. Once a community chooses to be NOPEC, they can start receiving all of the benefits of NOPEC membership. 

Find more information about becoming a NOPEC community here.

 

Lower energy rates are just the beginning. From energy efficiency financing programs to grant dollars to community outreach, NOPEC provides many additional benefits for our member communities. For additional information about all of the Member Community Benefits, check out our Member Benefits page.

Our programs:

We also provide our community leaders a Member Community Toolkit so they can share ready-to-use content and information about NOPEC with their residents.

Customers are able to view NOPEC's electric pricing and gas pricing online. 

NOPEC buys electricity and natural gas in bulk from NextEra Energy Services Ohio, LLC, a subsidiary of NextEra Energy, Inc., a trusted group of companies with more than 80 years of performance excellence, exceptional credit ratings, and financial stability.

Sometimes, due to market changes or the launch of new programs, the media will reach out to Board Members for a comment. In anticipation of these times, NOPEC will provide talking points to Board Members to prepare them for media interviews and quote requests. In the event of a crisis, all media inquires should be directed to the Executive Director or Legal Counsel.

As a NOPEC Board Member, you will be introduced to the Entrepreneurial Operating System (EOS). NOPEC staff use the EOS model for planning and managing day to day operations and goals. Each year, you will be invited to an EOS retreat. This includes a day and a half of discussing NOPEC's goals for the year, as well as a review of the organization's 3 and 10-year goals.

View NOPEC's staff accountability chart here

With more than 1,100 energy suppliers in the market, our marketing team works tirelessly to increase brand awareness and inform residents and small businesses about NOPEC through TV, print, and digital advertising.

View our most recent commercials:

 

 

As an opt-out energy aggregation, all eligible customers of an aggregated community become part of the buying group unless they take specific action to opt-out of the aggregation. NOPEC is required by the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) to give our members the chance to opt-out of NOPEC's electric aggregation every 3 years and natural gas aggregation every 2 years. This means a customer can choose to opt-out of the aggregation program, either defaulting back to the utility or choosing their own energy supplier. NOPEC notifies customers during these enrollment periods by letter, informing residents they are in the aggregation, providing details about rate options, and giving them the opportunity to opt-out of the aggregation program. To opt-out, customers need to fill out and return their opt-out form that they will receive with their enrollment letter. Postcards need to be returned by mail to the address printed on the post card or by fax at 800-238-5676.

Additionally, NOPEC and NextEra send refresh enrollment mailings monthly to anyone that has a new energy account, such as a new business or newly built home, or to anyone that has recently moved into a NOPEC community.

For more information about the opt-out process, go to our enrollment page. 

In preparation for an anniversary opt-out mailing (every two years for natural gas and every 3 years for election), NOPEC provides community leaders with a timeline of when the enrollment letters will be in the mail, answers to questions that residents may have, and other support materials they may need.

EarthEra® Renewable Energy Credits (REC) are national voluntary RECs created by wind or solar energy projects located in North America. The EarthEra® program was established by NextEra's affiliate, NextEra Energy Resources, to provide an innovative way for businesses and consumers to support the development of renewable energy resources with confidence that the proceeds from the purchase of EarthEra® RECs are going to the development and construction of new wind and solar energy projects in the United States.

The proceeds from the purchase of EarthEra® RECs are deposited in the EarthEra® Renewable Energy Trust, a fund overseen by an independent third-party trustee, which invests 100% of the proceeds it receives in the development and construction of new renewable energy projects in North America. One goal of the EarthEra program is to accelerate the growth of clean renewable resources and make these resources a major part of America's energy future. Proceeds from the sale of EarthEra RECs are already being directed to renewable energy projects under development in the Northeast and may be directed to similar projects in Ohio in the future.

For more information about the RECs included in NOPEC's electric aggregation program, go to https://www.nopec.org/check-rates/renewable-energy-credits-2/

The NOPEC Foundation was incorporated in 2019 and will be funded through stipulations in NOPEC's current supply contract with NextEra once certain growth metrics are met. The interest earned from the fund will be used to support NOPEC member communities with funding for initiatives that will help solve some of their toughest community issues.

Board Members:

Joseph Ruby

Jeff Linton

David Gillock

In NOPEC’s formative years, it was often very difficult to know the path to follow in order to make sure that NOPEC could routinely deliver electricity to customers. Competition in the electric supply space was a brand-new concept and no company or organization had much experience in how to compete. NOPEC was forced to rely exclusively on suppliers who were either an arm of an investor-owned utility (IOU) (who were resentful of having to share the retail space and give away market share with anyone), or out-of-state retailers who had no real Ohio based experience or political connections to help guarantee that the equation wouldn’t be artificially turned against them by IOUs with a ton more political stickiness in Ohio. Either way, the early NOPEC board leadership was very worried about how to survive given the hostility towards the governmental opt-out business model that existed at the time. If Ohio IOUs wanted to get rid of NOPEC all they needed to do was simply not bid their supply and then talk their fellow IOUs out of doing the same. With no supply chain NOPEC would be out of business. Game over. And so, the Board struggled to find a way to provide a secure path forward.

The question really was “How could NOPEC secure supply for its customers in case it could get no in-state bidders?” Under Ohio’s council of governments (COG) law, a COG is never allowed to create any form of liability, financial or otherwise, that might go back on the individual communities that are members of the COG. That meant that NOPEC, the COG, could never actually become its own supplier because to do so NOPEC would have to become licensed by the PUCO as a Competitive Energy Retail Supplier (CRES). And any company seeking to become a CRES would need to post a small fortune in security so that the PUCO could make sure that the CRES customers were able to be supplied with power in the event that the CRES company were to unexpectedly close its doors. So, if NOPEC was ever in a position where it could not get a bid from a qualified CRES company, NOPEC would be essentially out of business. Enter NOPEC, Inc.

Formed by NOPEC in 2004, NOPEC, Inc. is a not-for-profit 501(c)4 corporation.  After discussions with the PUCO and the independent system operation responsible for Ohio at the time (ISOs are the companies who control traffic on the electric grid), a plan was agreed to that would allow NOPEC, Inc. to step in and be granted a CRES license (or one for natural gas too if need be) should NOPEC’s supply situation ever require such an action. NOPEC was permitted to grow the required collateral over a very long period of time but would have to provide that cash to NOPEC, Inc. to pledge as security if it ever sought an active CRES status. NOPEC has been growing a pot of funds to be used for the necessary collateral in case it is required ever since. Thus far in NOPEC’s history, NOPEC has had to rely on the ability to create an active CRES through NOPEC, Inc. on multiple occasions in order to survive. But those stories will be a part of your onboarding process.

Thank you for reviewing this Board Member Training. Feel free to reach out to the NOPEC Staff with any questions that you may have.

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