Jeff Endrizzi (Otter Tail Power Company, Big Stone Plant Manager) and Jim Kramer (Safety & Security Coordinator for the Air Quality Control Systems Project) stopped at the Ortonville EDA office today with the news that the AQCS Project is now considered complete and they are officially back on-line with business as usual. It is certainly good news for the project to be complete; however, many of our local businesses and rental property owners have commented that they will certainly miss the influx of activity that this project brought to our area.
The Big Stone Plant which serves 298,500 customers in Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Montana began operations in 1975. In the spring of 2013, the workers started to arrive for the construction of the Air Quality Control Systems Project (at an approximate investment of $490 million). The construction period ran from 2013 to 2015 and at its peak, it brought as many as 500 construction workers to the area. Although this is a South Dakota Plant, our Minnesota community enjoyed the economic impact of this project and continues to benefit through the employment opportunities, work for our local contractors and other area vendors.
A few Otter Tail Quick Facts: (taken from their “Our commitment to you” brochure)
- Mixing it up. Reliable, affordable, environmentally responsible electricity requires a mix of resources. Today nearly 20 percent of Otter Tail’s electricity comes from renewables, a number they expect to grow.
- Otter Tail’s average residential rate is 31 percent lower than the national average
- Giving back. $572,000+ in charitable contributions in 2014
- Investing in Change. 45% of their net investment is in renewable resources, environmental upgrades, and transmission improvements.
- Creating jobs. +25,200 jobs added or saved over the past 25 years. They also support the health and vitality of local vendors. In 2014 they paid more than $290,000,000 to tri-state vendors.
For a complete update on Otter Tail Power Company’s Big Stone Plant AQCS Project, watch for next week’s edition of the Ortonville Independent!