Decisionmakers: Tim Taylor
October 8, 2007
With the concerns of over 12,000 water and electric customers in the balance, Truckee Donner Public Utility District Board of Directors President Tim Taylor and his four colleagues meet in earnest twice a month. He said they devote countless hours of research before and after board meetings to inform themselves on the issues important to the district.
“I believe the board should be the visionary of the district and hire the professional staff to carry out that vision,” Taylor said in an e-mail interview. “The board is ultimately responsible for the fiscal health of the district and must be willing to do what it takes to ensure that health is maintained. I do not believe the board should be micro-managing the district staff.”
Taylor said because of his 20-plus years of experience in the water and wastewater field and his educational background (he holds both a bachelor’s and master’s degree in civil and environmental engineering) he felt compelled to take on the task.
“I went into this challenge with the thought that my education and experience would benefit the district and the community in moving into the future,” Taylor said.
Recently, navigating board meetings has been daunting with controversies like last fall’s debate over energy procurement from coal-fired power plants. These meetings can draw crowds of residents who are sometimes dissatisfied with board decisions.
Whatever the outcome of the debates, Taylor said he attempts to bring in all sides during a discussion.
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“Mainly it is a personal judgment call as the meeting progresses,” Taylor explained. “You must be willing to allow the board and the public the time to express their opinions without allowing the meeting to spiral out of control. Sometimes it is a fine line. I try and make sure that mutual respect is adhered to at all times, but that can be difficult when emotions are thrown into the mix.”
Taylor is married and enjoys mountain biking and skiing with friends and family. He and his wife are avid travelers.