Damaged generator back in service

Thursday, July 11, 2002

While the cause of the July 4 power outage in Marshall remains a mystery, the generator it damaged is back in service.

At Wednesday's meeting of the Marshall Municipal Utilities Board of Public Works, MMU Electric Production Superintendent Kyle Gibbs discussed repairs made to the Unit 5 generator.

Gibbs said worn linkages in the unit's governor controls got bound up after two breakers on the transmission line opened, shifting most of Marshall's electrical load to the unit. Gibbs said it took some time to locate the problem, but once found it was fairly easy to repair. He said the cost of the repairs was minimal and the unit went back on line Tuesday.

In a side note, MMU General Manager Paul Jensen said while the unit was down for repairs it had actually been cheaper to purchase power from Kansas City Power and Light than to generate it locally.

In other business, the board granted an employment freeze exemption to replace a meter reader.

Gieringer told the board that since its last meeting a janitor and meter reader had resigned. He said the administrative office is making due without the janitor but the meter reader position must be filled. He said the position is currently being filled by a crew member borrowed from MMU's Underground Facilities Department.

This situation is undesirable for two reasons, Gieringer said. First, moving the crew member leaves the other department short-handed. In addition, the borrowed crew member is of a higher pay grade than the meter reading position, so MMU is losing money with the replacement.

The board acted without dissent to allow the position to be exempted from the hiring freeze placed in effect last year.

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