Bluebonnet to hold Annual Meeting without public attendance

Bluebonnet Electric Cooperative’s Annual Meeting, scheduled for Tuesday, May 12, 2020, will be held without public attendance. The cooperative’s Board of Directors made the decision to avoid endangering the health of its members, employees and communities from the spread of the coronavirus. The decision adheres to federal, state and public health guidelines issued in March to restrict large public gatherings in order to reduce the spread of coronavirus through community contact.

Bluebonnet’s bylaws require the cooperative to have an Annual Meeting every year in May. State law governs when notification of the Annual Meeting is sent to members.

Read the news release »
See updates on our Facebook page »

Even though the meeting will be held without public attendance, it is important that members return the proxy forms mailed to them in March. Members are asked to fill out and return their proxy form, postmarked no later than May 5, so that they can be fully represented in any business of the cooperative that might be placed on the meeting’s agenda. The proxy forms will also be counted in order to constitute a quorum for the Annual Meeting.
 
Four incumbent directors are unopposed in this year’s election and, therefore, will be elected by general consent in accordance with Bluebonnet’s bylaws. There is currently no new business on the agenda for the 2020 Annual Meeting, and none is anticipated.
 
The four incumbent directors who are unopposed in this year’s election are Roderick Emanuel, District 3, Bastrop County; Russell Jurk, District 4, Lee, Milam and Williamson counties; Byron Balke, District 6, Austin, Colorado and Fayette counties; and Robert Mikeska, District 7, Washington County.
 

Frequently Asked Questions

Has Bluebonnet’s Annual Meeting been canceled due to the coronavirus outbreak?
No, the meeting has not been canceled, but it will be held without public. Bluebonnet’s bylaws require that the meeting is held each year in May. The cooperative’s Board of Directors decided to hold the meeting without public attendance in order to avoid endangering the public health of members, employees and communities from the spread of the coronavirus.

The meeting will still be on Tuesday, May 12, and although members cannot attend the meeting, by returning their completed proxy forms before May 5, they can be fully represented if any cooperative business is placed on the meeting’s agenda that would require a vote by members. Those items would have to be added no later than 10 days before the Annual Meeting. The completed proxy forms are very important as they will also be counted to constitute a quorum of at least 1 percent of the cooperative’s membership, which is required for the 2020 Annual Meeting to take place.

What is proxy voting, and how does it work? 
Proxy voting allows members who are not able to attend the Annual Meeting to designate another person attending the annual meeting or Bluebonnet’s Proxy Committee to vote in his or her place. Proxy forms were mailed to all members in March. Complete the proxy form and return it by mail. If you misplaced or didn’t receive the proxy form, call 800-842-7708 and ask a member service representative to mail one to you. Proxies must be postmarked by May 5, 2020, and mailed to:

Bluebonnet Elections Processing
c/o Election Services Co.
P.O. Box 9020
Ronkonkoma, NY 11779-9822


Can this proxy be used again at future Annual Meetings? 
No, the proxy is valid only for the meeting specified on the proxy form.
 
Why should I return a proxy form if there are no contested elections for directors, and there will probably be no new business during the Annual Meeting? How should I direct my proxy?
Proxy participation is important to ensure there is a quorum of members represented during the Annual Meeting, and if any new business is placed on the Annual Meeting agenda that requires a vote. Members can direct their proxy selection to the Proxy Committee, which is made up of the five Bluebonnet Directors who are not up for election this year: Ben Flencher, Milton Shaw, Debbi Goertz, Shana Whiteley and Bryan Bracewell.

Are you going to give out prizes?
Bluebonnet will still give away prizes, and any member who returns a proxy form will be entered into drawings for prizes, which the cooperative will mail or deliver to winners.

How will members know what occurs during the Annual Meeting?
Bluebonnet will post information immediately after the Annual Meeting on our website, bluebonnet.coop, and on our social media: Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. We will also send a news release to local media outlets and include an article about the meeting in our pages of the July issue of Texas Co-op Power magazine.   
 
What if I wanted to ask questions during the meeting?
Any member, at any time can send questions to General Manager and CEO Matt Bentke via his email, generalmanager@bluebonnet.coop. Questions submitted to Matt via the general manager email are normally responded to within a day or two.


Bluebonnet’s service area is divided into seven districts. Can I vote for candidates in all districts or just the district in which I live?
Co-op members can vote for directors in all districts. The districts in the co-op’s service area were drawn along Bluebonnet’s service area boundary and county lines. The seven districts are represented by one to three directors based on, among other things, the number of meters in each district.
 
Who administers the election? 
Election Services Co., which is a third-party, independent vendor that specializes in administering corporate elections nationwide. It has the skills, experience and equipment to efficiently and accurately tally proxies and votes while adhering to the Federal Trade Commission’s Red Flag requirements that protect members’ confidential account information.
 
Can I change my address or do other business at the Annual Meeting? 
Bluebonnet’s member service representatives at the information booth will be able to help members with most of their co-op business and answer any questions they would normally handle at any member service center or through the call center.