More than 150 visitors attended the grand opening of the new Lincoln County Power District headquarters and administration building April 5 near Panaca.
All of the company equipment and service trucks were on display, a safety demonstration was given outside and refreshments were available.
General Manager Dave Luttrell said the 4,500-square foot headquarters is connected via a breezeway with a 1,500-square foot operations building. “We were glad to see that many turn out and look things over, and I think everyone was impressed and pleased with the facility.”
Located on U.S. 93, just a short distance from the entrance to Cathedral Gorge State Park, the new headquarters replaces the one at the Caselton Mine that has been in service since 1937.
On a table in the conference room in the new building, Luttrell displayed some memorabilia including a copy of the September 25, 1937 issue of the Pioche Record announcing Power Day, to celebrate the beginning of the Lincoln County Power District with power supplied by Hoover Dam. Governor Richard Kirman Sr. and several state senators, legislative officials and local dignitaries attended.
Luttrell said this is Phase I of the building project. Phase II will take place in 2020 to build a shop and warehouse and move the line crews to headquarters. At present, the line crew and warehouse operations will continue to function at the Caselton Mine location.
Luttrell noted that one of the reasons for moving to the Panaca location is that “the land was available and it is more centrally located to the customer base we serve and allows for greater public access. Plus, it’s a flat parcel, so we can expand on it. In addition, we have seen a significant increase in walk-in traffic to pay their bill, ask questions, make service inquiries, etc. We hardly ever got walk-in traffic in the Caselton building, because frankly, it was difficult to get to, especially in the winter snows.”
He noted the building at Caselton worked well for a lot of years, “but our new site will hopefully be the location to serve the Lincoln County Power District for the next 82 years.”
In the foyer of the new building, a display area will be set up to document the creation of the power district and the involvement of John Henry Buehler, the first board chairman of Lincoln County Power and driving force for bringing regular electric service to the area. Other board chairmen will also be memorialized in the display.