It has come to our attention that some of Boyce Hydro’s employees have encountered rude and belligerent behavior from some members of the public, just because they work for Boyce Hydro. Not only is this kind of behavior unacceptable in civil society, it is misdirected. Persons with complaints about how Boyce Hydro goes about its business have no right to take those complaints out on hard working members of the Boyce Hydro staff. They don’t make policy; they carry it out.
Boyce Hydro’s operators are responsible for starting and stopping the machines, opening and closing the head gates when required, monitoring the water levels in the reservoirs to ensure compliance with the Federal licenses, monitoring the earthen dams to make sure they are stable and draining water properly, and many other tasks. This is a full time job for four men and a 24-hour a day job in spring. Boyce Hydro employs nine full time people from the local area, two local contractors and their staff virtually year round, and several young men during the summer to help with various construction and maintenance projects. Like you, all these people have families, shop, dine and otherwise enjoy their community. Anyone who denigrates hard working people like these just because they don’t like the company they work for should be ashamed of themselves.
Like it or not, Boyce Hydro is a part of your community. Boyce Hydro employs some of your neighbors, buys materials and supplies from local businesses, hires local contractors and generally contributes to the economic well-being of parts of Gladwin and Midland Counties. Also, all of this activity is paid for due to the fact that Boyce Hydro is in the business of electrical energy production from the renewable resource of water. This fact makes it possible for the four reservoirs – Sanford, Wixom, Smallwood, and Secord – to exist. As a private enterprise, Boyce Hydro is self-supporting. Were this not the case, the public would have to pay for the maintenance and repair of 87-year-old earthen dams and concrete civil structures and water level regulation through assessment districts or taxes.
Contrary to popular belief, the extra property taxes that are paid by lake-front homeowners do not contribute to any of the dam maintenance or daily operations. Not one penny of public money is provided to Boyce Hydro for these important services. If the dams stopped making electricity tomorrow, all of the maintenance and repair tasks would have to continue – at someone’s expense.
So the next time you see a Boyce Hydro employee, you might just want to say “Thank You.” He’s working so you can have a lake to boat on and fish in.