Learn more about hydroelectricity and why the Columbia River system is so vital to the Pacific Northwest!


An Op/Ed from Jack Janda, chair of the Mason County PUD No. 1 board of commissioners and Linda Gott, chair of the Mason County PUD No. 3 board of commissioners.

Mason County’s two public utility districts, PUD 1 and PUD 3 proudly serve their customers with safe, reliable electrical service at the lowest reasonable cost. Both districts are concerned about a recent policy statement from the US Department of Energy that, if allowed to proceed, could have drastic impacts on wholesale electricity rates. Further, it could erode the very basis of public power in the Pacific Northwest: local control. Read more

I write this article with the intention to inform you of some issues important to public power rate payers and to explain why you continue to see your electric bills increase. Like many Northwest utilities, most of Mason County PUD No. 1’s power is hydroelectric and purchased from Bonneville Power Administration (BPA). For the last year, PUD 1 and other members of the Public Power Council and Energy Northwest consumer advocacy groups have been working with the U.S. Department of Energy and BPA to ensure that BPA continues their mission to supply cost-based power to our local utilities. In addition to BPA’s role as a cost-based power supplier, BPA must adhere to subsequent laws and mandates, including mitigating the impact of the federal hydropower system on fish and wildlife. Read more

Mason PUD 1 Neon SignMason County PUD No. 1 was the first public utility district in Washington State, incorporated in 1934 and beginning operations in February of 1935. Located in Potlatch along the beautiful Hood Canal, PUD 1 serves approximately 5,100 electric customers, 2,000 water connections and manages one small community septic system.

Our electric service district reaches from the Skokomish Valley, across to Union and onward north into Jefferson County to Walker Mountain. However, as a major water purveyor in Mason County, PUD 1 manages water systems throughout the entire county.

Read more about the history and formation of Washington’s first public utility district.