'A Clean-Slate, 21st Century Municipal Electric Utility in Iowa and in a National Context' 

John Norris featured speaker of Decorah Power's Learning Series Oct. 26

John Norris, former chair of the Iowa Utilities Board and former member of the Federal Energy Regulatory Committee, will speak on how to start a customer-owned utility from the ground up at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 26, in Valders Hall of Science Room 362, on the Luther campus.

Norris' presentation, "A Clean-Slate, 21st Century Municipal Electric Utility in Iowa and in a National Context," is part of the Decorah Power Fall Learning Series. The presentation is open to the public with no charge for admission.

With the support of the Decorah City Council, local citizens group Decorah Power is conducting a feasibility study with privately raised funds to explore the creation of a Municipal Electric Utility in Decorah. The MEU would be a locally owned, city utility providing electricity services in the same way it provides water and sewer services. According to Decorah Power, there are 2,011 municipal electric utilities in the U.S., 136 of which are in Iowa. Iowa also has 44 rural electric cooperatives. 

Norris' presentation is part of the Decorah Power Learning Series, designed to educate the community on the opportunities and challenges in creating a Municipal Electric Utility in Decorah. The feasibility study is expected to be completed by the end of the year. Luther College has pledged $15,000 toward the study.

For more information about Decorah Power and the other Decorah Power Fall Learning Series events, visit www.decorahpower.org.

John Norris

With more than three decades of political, policy and administration experience, Norris has built an extensive background in energy. He served as a commissioner on the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission under President Barack Obama, and as the minister-counselor for agriculture for the United States Mission to the United Nations Agencies in Rome, Italy.

Within Iowa, Norris chaired Governor Tom Vilsack's Governor's Working Group on Electric Restructuring. Vilsack later appointed him the chairman of the Iowa Utilities Board. During his time with the IUB, he was elected president of the Organization of Midwest Independent System Operator States and served on the Advisory Council of the Iowa Energy Center, among other boards. Norris used his experience gained with the IUB to give presentations on energy, agriculture and regulatory issues both in the United States and internationally.

A partner and co-owner of the State Public Policy Group out of Des Moines, Norris currently provides issue management, research, advocacy, stakeholder outreach and facilitation services to his clients.

A national liberal arts college with an enrollment of 2,050, Luther offers an academic curriculum that leads to the Bachelor of Arts degree in more than 60 majors and pre-professional programs. For more information about Luther visit the college's website: http://www.luther.edu.