New GRDA Board Committee is workforce-focused

Power for Progress…
A weekly column from the Grand River Dam Authority

Although the Grand River Dam Authority’s seven-member board of directors meets each month, in public meetings, to conduct the business of the Authority, there is much work to be done at other times as well.

A GRDA high voltage power line crosses the Oklahoma landscape near Inola. All the tasks associated with production and delivery of GRDA’s “power for progress” are completed by a skilled workforce comprised of nearly 500 Oklahomans.

Several board committees, consisting of three members each, are also in place. Each of these committees focuses on specific areas of GRDA then makes recommendations and reports back to the full board. Currently, there are individual GRDA board committees in place to deal with assets, audit/budget, fuel, marketing, policy, long-range planning and resources.

In recent months a new board committee – dedicated to employee compensation issues – has been established. Like other recent initiatives at GRDA, this new committee has grown out of the Authority’s efforts to implement the findings and recommendations of the recent performance audit. As a benchmarking tool, that audit allowed GRDA the opportunity to assess what it has done well and what it can improve on. In the case of the compensation committee it is a little bit of both; GRDA has always maintained a skilled workforce but is now bringing even greater focus to workforce management issues.

The new compensation committee will be responsible for insuring GRDA compensation and benefits are competitive and fair, both across-the-board and down to each individual employee. It is also in place to monitor the actual workforce “head count” and help direct the individual department budgets. The main goal of the committee is to increase visibility and accountability related to employee issues while providing an employee voice at the board level.

That is important because it takes a dedicated and skilled workforce to operate GRDA. Performing maintenance on electric generators, rebuilding high-voltage transmission lines, assisting stranded boaters, completing financial reports, analyzing water samples or doing any of dozens of other tasks are necessary everyday at GRDA. When the workforce is skilled, dedicated, and heard, GRDA is successful in fulfilling its low-cost electricity, economic development and environmental stewardship mission for the state.

That is good for Oklahoma.

Headquartered in Vinita, GRDA is Oklahoma’s state-owned electric utility; fully funded by revenues from electric and water sales instead of taxes. Directly or indirectly, GRDA’s low-cost, reliable; electricity serves nearly 500,000 homes in Oklahoma and stretches into 75 of 77 counties in the state. At no cost to Oklahoma taxpayers, GRDA also manages 70,000 surface acres of lakes in the state, including Grand Lake, Lake Hudson and the W.R. Holway Reservoir. Today, GRDA’s 500 employees continue to produce the same “power for progress” that has benefited the state for 75 years. 

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