About Public Power

There are 82 municipal electric utilities in Wisconsin. Like Kaukauna, these communities believe that public power is the best choice for their communities and citizens. Check out the reasons below and watch this great informational video:

  • Community Ownership. A community-owned utility is owned by the city or municipality it serves. It exists to provide a public service to the residents and businesses of the community. Service – rather than profit – is the utility’s mission.
  • Local Control and Regulation. The rates and services of a municipal utility are governed by the city itself, either through the city commission or an appointed or elected utility authority. Thus, the utility is governed by residents of the community who are also customers of the utility and are thoroughly familiar with its operations and services.

If a customer has a complaint, he or she does not have to call long distance and talk to a series of phone operators. The customer can discuss the problem locally, with another member of the community, and be assured that the problem will be addressed.

  • Quick On-Site Response. We work hard to make sure you don’t experience a power outage. Some things like storms and accidents are out of our control. If an outage occurs, we’re always just a few minutes away. We’ll get to the problem and fix it as quickly as we possibly can.
  • Efficient Operation. Since one of our goals is to be the low-cost provider of electric service, our current and future advantage lies in our efficient operation. Our expenses are substantially lower than those of a private power company.
  • Keeping Dollars in the Community. Here are a few ways a municipal utility helps to maintain a sound local economy:
    • Local ownership means that customers’ energy dollars stay in the community — creating jobs and supporting the local economy.
    • Municipal utilities serve as an engine for economic development. Local flexibility and quality service offered by municipal utilities are a major advantage for the community in attracting and retaining commercial and industrial customers.
    • Municipal utilities make significant payments-in-lieu-of-taxes to the city. The utility makes payments to the city’s general fund every year in lieu of taxes.
    • On average, municipal utility rates are competitive and often lower than those of other utilities. Competitive rates means more dollars are available to spend on other goods and services, which boosts the local economy.
  • Community Values. Decisions about the operation of a municipal utility are made locally — by members of the community — at open, public meetings. Because all decisions are made locally, a municipal utility is uniquely able to respond to the community’s needs, build on the community’s strengths and reflect and advance the community’s values.

Public Power Week

Public Power Week is an annual national event coordinated by the American Public Power Association in Washington, D.C. The American Public Power Association is the voice of not-for-profit, community-owned utilities that power 2,000 towns and cities nationwide. The Association represents public power before the federal government to protect the interests of the more than 49 million people that public power utilities serve, and the 93,000 people they employ. It advocates and advises on electricity policy, technology, trends, training, and operations. Its members strengthen their communities by providing superior service, engaging citizens, and instilling pride in community-owned power. More at www.PublicPower.org.

Kaukauna Utilities takes part in Public Power Week every year with events, giveaways, public power information, etc. Keep an eye on our social media to see what we have planned every year!