Press Releases

For Immediate Release
Contact: Bob Kjelland bob.kjelland@rmfu.org
Phone: 970-397-0039

For Immediate Release Contact: Bob Kjelland bob.kjelland@rmfu.org

RMFU Commends Tri-State’s Responsible Energy Plan, Offers To Work Collaboratively

Denver, CO – In response to Tri-State Generation & Transmission’s (Tri-State) announcement of its Responsible Energy Plan, Rocky Mountain Farmers Union (RMFU), a general farm organization comprised of farm and ranch families across Colorado, New Mexico, and Wyoming, renewed a request to provide meaningful input in Tri-State’s initiative.

“Farmers and ranchers work within razor-thin margins to make ends meet. We need to think strategically to reduce our cost-of-production, be flexible in how we plan for and manage input costs, and constantly react to the demands of our own customers. We believe our energy providers should do the same,” says RMFU President Dr. Dale McCall. “We do commend Tri-State for mapping out this strategy for the future and we look forward to continuing to work together.”

RMFU’s farm and ranch families make up a significant portion of Tri-State’s customer base and spend on average of seven percent of their budget on energy costs. RMFU seeks to strengthen access to reliable and affordable forms of energy and urges Tri-State to make meaningful important changes in how it produces and provides electricity across its territory in order to save its customers money and encourage much-needed economic growth in rural areas.

In a resolution adopted last year, RMFU asked Tri-State to address its high cost electrical rates by exploring other options and by gathering insights from farmers and ranchers who are member-owners of local rural electric cooperatives. “As introduced today, the Responsible Energy Plan does go a long way toward looking to future needs and possibilities. To assure success, Tri-State needs to implement this plan in a way that both addresses how it handles shutting down some forms of electric generation while also giving locally-owned rural electric associations flexibility in how each one also respond to their respective members,” explains McCall. “Ultimately, this plan will need to work for farmers and ranchers in terms of delivering affordable, reliable, and sustainable electricity.”

The Rocky Mountain Farmers Union (RMFU) Board of Directors unanimously passed a resolution in response to the Tri-State announcement of the Responsible Energy Plan. The resolution reads: “RMFU commends Tri-State for announcing the transformative Responsible Energy Plan and desires to partner with Tri-State and former Governor Bill Ritter and CSU’s Center for the New Energy Economy in the collaborative stakeholder process that will contribute to and help define and implement Tri-State’s Responsible Energy Plan.”

“What this means is our farm organization does not want Tri-State to go it alone in this process. We want the end users – farmers and ranchers and residents of rural communities – to have their concerns and their recommendations heard and considered,” adds McCall. “We encourage Tri-State to welcome their local cooperative members and local ratepayers, including many of our farm and ranch family members, to be at the table in a transparent and public process during next steps.”

RMFU is hopeful Tri-State’s recent actions ensure proactive reform inclusive of diversification and modernization to take advantage of fast-changing market opportunities to expand the renewable portfolio. “Working together, we can maximize local economic benefits and sustainable electric service for our members and ultimately keep agriculture in business,” says McCall.

Election Year Partisan Posturing Hurts Ag

By Kent Peppler, President Rocky Mountain Farmers Union is a busy farm organization. We have a lot of irons in the fire requiring our attention 24/7, 365 days a year. We are a diverse organization with many interests and responsibilities including youth camps, our Young Fellows program, food policy, development of cooperatives, insurance operations, and a ton more. When I decide to write my opinion on a subject it is not uncommon for me to intellectually throw a “make believe” dart at a target full of different subjects that Rocky... Read More

“They Don’t Speak for Me” Campaign Launches

Denver, CO, July 9, 2014 — In an effort to dispel erroneous information about the proposed Waters of the US (WOTUS) rule and false perceptions that Washington, DC lobby groups speak for all farmers on the rule, Rocky Mountain Farmers Union (RMFU) is launching the “They Don’t Speak For Me” campaign today, by running advertisements in several Colorado newspapers.   The goal of the campaign is to make it clear that many farmers and ranchers in Colorado support the new common-sense protections for clean water as proposed by the EPA.... Read More

Western governors need to act now and find common ground for common sense solutions on Greater sage-grouse

This week, the Western Governors Association will meet in Colorado Springs, Colorado to talk through some pretty big issues facing the West. Not least among those are declining populations of the Greater sage-grouse, an iconic bird whose habitat covers 11 western states from Colorado to Montana and all the way to the West Coast. Unfortunately, as is often the case in politics, there’s been far too much chest puffing (like a male sage-grouse courting females) and talks of delay and not enough action. Western governors can change that. With their... Read More

Western governors need to act now and find common ground for common sense solutions on Greater sage-grouse

Next week, the Western Governors Association will meet in Colorado Springs, Colorado to talk through some pretty big issues facing the West. Not least among those are declining populations of the Greater sage-grouse, an iconic bird whose habitat covers 11 western states from Colorado to Montana and all the way to the West Coast. Unfortunately, as is often the case in politics, there’s been far too much chest puffing (like a male sage-grouse courting females) and talks of delay and not enough action. Western governors can change that. With their... Read More

It’s time to put summer camp on your calendar

Parents looking for fun, affordable and meaningful summer camps may want to check out the education programs offered by Rocky Mountain Farmers Union. “These camps focus on leadership and teamwork building activities,”  says Jennifer Luitjens Bahr, director of education for the organization. “Campers will use engaging and sometimes challenging lessons to learn how to excel in their own lives and hometown communities.” Junior camps for youth who have completed grades 2-4 will be held June 6-9. Middle camps for students who have completed grades 5-7 will be held June 9-13.... Read More

It’s time to put summer camp on your calendar

Looking for a great opportunity for the little ones (ages 7-18)? It’s all here at our RMFU Cooperative Leadership Camps!  Our camps are traditional in the sense that we do hiking, crafts, cooperative games, and more, but where we stand apart is that we try to send the campers home with some type of new found knowledge that they might not necessarily learn about in school or through other venues.  Then at the end of camp we go on a field trip to give hands-on experience incorporating the theme.  But more... Read More

It’s time to put summer camp on your calendar

It’s time to put summer camp on your calendar Parents looking for fun, affordable and meaningful summer camps may want to check out the education programs offered by Rocky Mountain Farmers Union. “These camps focus on leadership and teamwork building activities,”  says Jennifer Luitjens Bahr, director of education for the organization. “Campers will use engaging and sometimes challenging lessons to learn how to excel in their own lives and hometown communities.” Junior camps for youth who have completed grades 2-4 will be held June 6-9. Middle camps for students who... Read More

It’s time to put summer camp on your calendar

It’s time to put summer camp on your calendar Parents looking for fun, affordable and meaningful summer camps may want to check out the education programs offered by Rocky Mountain Farmers Union. “These camps focus on leadership and teamwork building activities,”  says Jennifer Luitjens Bahr, director of education for the organization. “Campers will use engaging and sometimes challenging lessons to learn how to excel in their own lives and hometown communities.” Junior camps for youth who have completed grades 2-4 will be held June 6-9. Middle camps for students who... Read More

RMFU Commends Farm Bill Compromise, Urges Passage

RMFU President Kent Peppler, a fourth-generation farmer in Mead, Colo., today endorsed the Farm Bill compromise and urged Congress to pass the bill. “A compromise never gives you everything you want,” Peppler said, “but this bill is good for farmers and good for consumers. The bill provides crop insurance and nearly $4 billion in livestock disaster relief, as well as increased funding for farmers markets and local foods. It established mandatory funding for renewable energy programs.” Peppler commended the Farm Bill conference committee for their hard work and urged Congress... Read More

New Faces and Familiar Ones on the RMFU Board

Delegates to the RMFU convention re-elected Kent Peppler of Mead, Colo. as president and Ken Macy, of Pine Bluffs, Wyo., as board member for Wyoming. District 1 board member Monty Neibur and District 4 board member Charles Klaseen retired this year. Steve Nein, of Ovid, Colo., and John Field, of Montrose, were elected to fill their places on the board.