Reader Opinion: It’s our cooperative
If you make your electricity payment to Crow Wing Power, I hope you’re paying attention to what’s been going on for the past several years. Each household that gets their electricity from this cooperative is a part owner. Cooperative principles state that any profits made are to be returned to the members. That hasn’t been happening.
Hiding behind closed-door meetings and non-disclosure agreements, the CEO and several board members have been personally profiting from our cooperative. When this information was made public by board member Bryan McCulloch, members showed up for the 2019 annual meeting and voted to remove the CEO and conduct an audit. However, we couldn’t get a majority of the board to act, perhaps because several of them are complicit.
There is a group of concerned members that formed as a result. This is the CWP Accountability Group. Its goals are simple: Change the leadership and bring justice to individuals who demonstrated what we believe is fraudulent behavior; conduct an audit and provide reimbursement of funds; and nullify all self-enriching CWP management and board royalty agreements. This group can be found on Facebook or with a Google search.
This month’s newsletter from Crow Wing Power dismisses the Accountability Group as disruptive and encourages you to call the cooperative if you have questions. I tell you, this is like having your house burglarized and then calling the thief to ask what happened. Please explore the group’s website and Facebook page and make your own decision. There are candidates running in the next board election committed to acting in the best interest of the members, so please vote. It’s our cooperative; it’s our money. Crow Wing Power has done many good things for our community. How much more could be accomplished if money taken by executives was returned?
Shawn Marie Brummer