18 Jun Member Spotlight- KMU
What is KMU and what do they do? Kansas Municipal Utilities (KMU) is a statewide association that represents 181 municipal (cities, towns or governing bodies) electric, natural gas, water and waste water utilities. Brad Mears, Assistant Executive Director of KMU enlightened the Chamber Connections crowd about the vision of the KMU board to provide needed services for successful utilities now and in the future. KMU was formed in 1928 and has been a resource for education programs as well as providing information to members about legislative and regulatory issues. The KMU legislative team takes an active role in working with decision makers on legislation and regulations that effect utility operations.
The KMU board and Executive Director Colin Hanson, realized that the small office on main street wasn’t going to best accommodate the future needs of municipal utilities, so they began researching and visiting buildings all over the country. After much planning, they constructed the 20,000 sq. ft. training center complex at 2090 E. Ave. A. The KMU building is not only unique looking and has won several architectural awards, but it is also the perfect design for training and educational programs. In addition to the building, KMU has 35 acres of property with an underground and overhead electrical system, underground water system, and an underground natural gas system. The design allows for continuous training, from the classroom setting to the hands-on training indoors (complete with telephone poles and more) and outdoor utility systems. KMU is successfully training the current municipal utility workforce as well as the next generation. According to Mears, KMU hosted 113 events last year with participants coming from all over Kansas and surrounding states. KMU training specialists also travel the state to offer safety training and consulting for their members. Find out more about the services of KMU at www.kmunet.org and see pictures from the Chamber Connections here.
Looking for space to host your next company event? Contact Kansas Municipal Utilities at 620-241-1423 for information on facility rental. They can accommodate 16 in the executive board room, 26-116 classroom, theatre or banquet style in the auditorium and will even rent the garage area if needed. KMU is a valuable asset to McPherson and Kansas; benefiting local communities through their services, long-term objectives and by opening their doors to accommodate community needs.