Closed Circuit

By Philip Reed

On Nov. 26, Administrator and CEO Mark A. Gabriel submitted a memo to Assistant Secretary of the Office of Electricity Bruce J. Walker and Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Office of Electricity Patricia Hoffman regarding the progress made on WAPA’s fiscal year 2019 goals.

The goals were laid out in WAPA’s refreshed Tactical Action Plan, which contains the specific goals and objectives for WAPA to focus on over a two- to three-year time period in order to advance the Critical Pathways laid out in Strategic Roadmap 2024.

Those Critical Pathways are Business, Technology and Organizational Excellence; Mutually Beneficial Partnerships; Evolution of Services; and Powering the Energy Frontier. The TAP was refreshed early in the fiscal year, identifying 14 goals to further advance WAPA toward meeting them.

“WAPA leverages its strategic plan to improve its efficiency and effectiveness in keeping the lights on for more than 40 million Americans, and our FY 2019 strategic activities reflect that focus,” wrote Gabriel in the memo. “I am proud of the exceptional progress WAPA employees have made toward achieving our strategic milestones.”

The accomplishments WAPA reported are as follows:

Mission Critical Customer Services in an Evolving Industry

  • Preparing for Markets
    • Transitioned to the California Independent System Operator Reliability Coordinator in the Sierra Nevada region.
    • Decided to join Southwest Power Pool’s Western Energy Imbalance Service in three regions.
    • Decided to join the California Independent System Operator Energy Imbalance Market in one region.
  • Organizational Approach to Markets
    • Completed the Power Marketing function reorganization and realignment.
    • Completed Balancing Area Optimization project.
    • Developed and began implementation of the Power Billing function organizational realignment plan.
    • Developed Energy Marketing Management Office knowledge-management framework.

People and Organization

  • Human Performance and Just Culture
    • ​Identified champions in maintenance and operations to serve as advocates for this culture change.
  • Leadership Development
    • ​Developed resource strategy to support program implementation in fiscal year 2020.
  • ​​Program and Budget Integration
    • Matured WAPA’s unfunded budget request framework.
    • Added new features to the WAPA Budget System to improve functionality.
  • ​Acquisition Management
    • Launched the Category Management Oversight Board.
    • Identified improvements to the construction requirements development process.

Asset Management 2.0

  • Life Cycle Management of Major Assets
    • ​Improved breaker analytics and risk quantification.
  • ​Life Cycle Management of Additional Assets
    • ​Added substation batteries, current transformers, capacity voltage transformers and network equipment to the Asset Management inventory.
  • ​Data as a Strategic Asset
    • ​Launched the Data as a Strategic Asset strategy development team.

Grid Resilience

  • Physical Security
    • Transitioned to a risk-based process to prioritize physical security remediation actions.
    • Implemented a revised Office of Security and Emergency Management organization structure.
  • ​Cybersecurity
    • Identified and procured security technology to monitor traffic in SCADA systems. 
  • ​Emergency Management
    • Developed and obtained approval for Emergency Management Program implementation plan.
    • Identified participants for WAPA Emergency Operation Center roles.
  • ​Strategic Transformer Management
    • Developed standard specifications for a large power transformer strategic sourcing contract.
    • Identified and prioritized transformer assets for High-Impact, Low-Frequency plans and mitigation.
  • ​Fiber Partnerships
    • Completed the fiber assessment plan to explore leasing dark fiber assets.
    • Hosted focus groups to explore fiber interest among customers.

Note: Reed is a public affairs specialist.

Last modified on March 7th, 2024