- :: Norris Public Power District
Sunflower by power lines, outside Fairbury


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To learn more about Nebraska's rural electric systems, go to www.workingfornebraska.org




Power To The People

Bruce Vitosh--General Manager and CEO

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Severe storms in May and June resulted in sporadic damage to the Norris electric facilities.  The damages were widespread and significant enough to force some customers to be without power overnight after two of these storms.  For each of these storms, Norris employees worked continuously throughout the night and into the following day until the last customer had their electricity restored.

 Shortly after one of the June storms, a customer in the Pickrell area was telling me that his power outage was making him nervous and that he was glad that his power was only out for a short time.  He was anxious because the heavy rain was causing water to run into his sump basin in the basement of his home.  Without electricity, his sump pump was of no value to him.  Fortunately, power was restored before the sump basin was filled with water.

 It is very easy to become complacent and think that electricity will always be available and when it is not, we are quickly reminded of the value electricity has in our lives.  The delivery of electricity to customers at the precise time when it is needed is a very complex process.  Electricity is generated and delivered across transmission and distribution facilities instantaneously.  Outage information confirms that Norris does provide highly reliable electric service to our customers.  Unfortunately, in spite of our efforts, outages do occur due to the nature of the electric energy delivery system.     

 With the recent construction of the Steele Flats Wind Farm “Steele Flats” located in the Norris service territory, many customers wonder if the electricity generated on that wind farm is purchased directly by Norris and used by our customers because of the location of the wind farm.

 Norris has an agreement with Nebraska Public Power District “NPPD” to purchase all of our customers’ power requirements from NPPD, except for a small percentage of electricity that is provided by Lincoln Electric System.  NPPD has an agreement with the owner of Steele Flats to purchase all of the power generated on their wind farm.  This power is delivered to the NPPD transmission system near Steele City.

 Since electricity travels at nearly the speed of light and arrives at its destination in almost the moment it is produced, the source of NPPD electricity delivered to Norris’ customers depends on the output of the generating plants that are in operation at the moment in time the electricity is generated and simultaneously consumed.  Power that is generated at Steele Flats is delivered to the NPPD transmission system and consumed by all customers connected to the transmission system, including Norris customers.

 NPPD has a diverse mix of fuel resources to generate electric power, including coal, nuclear, natural gas and oil.  NPPD generates energy from the renewable resources of wind and water. In addition, NPPD purchases hydropower from the Western Area Power Agency “WAPA”, which is a federal governmental marketing and transmission agency.  

 NPPD’s slogan is “Always There When You Need Us.”  The NPPD slogan is applicable to the many different ways in which they provide service to Norris and ultimately our customers.  NPPD and Norris deliver electricity just in time to meet the power requirements of our customers.

Norris Public Power District ©2014