Decay Test at Peavy

How the Cooperative Works

The UPRC functions with OSU and our cooperators each taking on individual and mutual responsibilities to achieve our objectives. At each 5-year interval, OSU prepares a draft work plan that addresses a series of objectives identified by utility cooperators. This draft is circulated to current and potential cooperative members for comment. The final document then serves as the basis for the next 5-year period. OSU prepares an annual report and holds an annual meeting of the advisory committee to review progress and make recommendations for continued research. 

Below you will find information on each parties responsibilities as agreed upon by OSU and our cooperators. You will also find information pertaining to membership in the UPRC.


OSU Responsibilities

Provide leadership and coordination of UPRC actions with advice from our cooperators...

    1. Identify research needs and set priorities.

    2. Plan and implement research projects.

    3. Analyze, interpret, and report the results of UPRC studies.

    4. Serve as liaison to organizations and individuals with expertise in utility pole technology and other pertinent interests.

    5. Provide leadership for the UPRC Advisory Committee.

    6. Schedule and moderate periodic meetings of the UPRC Advisory Committee.

    7. Utilize the financial, professional, and material resources available to the UPRC program in a cost-effective manner.

    8. Ensure that all UPRC activities comply with legal, regulatory, and administrative requirements.

Provide a forum for information exchange between industry cooperators...

    1. Serve as a focal point for information exchange on utility poles.

    2. Publish and distribute the results of UPRC sponsored scientific experiments in an appropriate manner.

    3. Produce annual reports summarizing the accomplishments of the UPRC program.

Provide scientific expertise in support of UPRC objectives...

    1. Employ sound experimental methods for UPRC studies.

    2. Ensure a high degree of quality control and uniformity in the installation, measurement, and analysis of UPRC studies.

    3. Provide documentation to improve public understanding of utility pole issues.


Cooperator Responsibilities
  1. Serve in an advisory capacity for items such as program direction and emphasis, level of support, compatibility with other research programs, conflict resolution, and general issues.

  2. Provide technical suggestions for pursuing UPRC objectives.

  3. Provide logistical support (such as chemicals, analytical services, or materials) for installing and evaluating UPRC studies. Such assistance will be negotiated on a study-by-study basis so that a firm commitment by all involved parties is assured. If necessary, supplemental agreements or contracts will be prepared which specify the type and amount of assistance offered.

  4. Provide financial support in the form of annual contributions. All individual industry contributions are to be equal and not less than $15,000 per utility cooperator per year or $7,500 per chemical company, inspection agency, or other associate member per year. Cooperators may increase the amount of future contributions at the annual meeting of the UPRC Advisory Committee. All annual payments shall be subject to an indirect cost rate of 17.5% on total direct costs. This rate is subject to change at future renewals but shall always be substantially below the OSU off-campus indirect cost rate for administering outside grants and contracts (currently 31%).

  5. Maintain the integrity of research plot installations where necessary until study completion.

  6. Permit the use of study sites for visits, tours, and demonstration areas which are directed and arranged by OSU (subject to the permission and sole discretion of the cooperator).

  7. One payment will be made annually by the cooperator. OSU will issue an invoice on March 1 of each year. Payments must include the invoice number, and will be processed within 120 days of invoice receipt.

Mutual Responsibilities
  1. Provide technical guidance and support to meet UPRC objectives.
  2. Provide and exchange information where necessary to meet requirements for experimentation and documentation.

  3. Foster a spirit of cooperation toward achieving the objectives of the UPRC program.

Membership and Benefits

Joining the UPRC

The Cooperative functions on a dues-basis with members contributing a set amount per year over a 5-year period. There are two levels of membership.

Full membership is limited to utilities, with the primary goal of ensuring that utilities have the principal voice in determining Coop direction. Full membership is available at a cost of $15,000 per utility per year.

Associate membership includes wood treaters, inspection agencies, and chemical companies. These members pay $7,500 per year.

While the Coop is funded over a 5-year period, members have the option of withdrawing from the Coop at the start of each year. Both membership types grant access to UPRC information, however, there are additional benefits/limitations related to each type. Read on to find the right membership type for your organization.

Full Membership: Utility Companies ($15,000 Annually)

Utilities may also contribute support in the form of materials such as poles for testing purposes. Full members have representation on the Steering and Scientific Advisory Committees, access to all UPRC information, and intellectual property advantages such as review of information for patenting and favored royalty status (favored royalty status means that OSU will not license to other parties in terms more favorable than to cooperators).

Associate Membership: Wood Treaters/Chemical Companies/Inspection Agencies ($7,500 Annually)

Associate members have access to UPRC-generated information, but no advantages with respect to product licensing. They may serve on the Steering or Scientific Advisory Committees where they can contribute to the discussion, but do not have voting rights. Associate membership is offered at the discretion of the Full Members, and requires approval by a majority vote of the Steering Committee. Associate membership must be renewed by voting at the start of each five-year operating period of the UPRC. Associate members who cease to make significant contributions to the UPRC may be removed at any time by a vote of the majority of the Full members. Membership is open to any firm or public agency.


Cooperative Benefits

The UPRC offers a number of tangible benefits to its members. The most important is access to current information on issues related to wood poles. In addition, members, through participation in the advisory committee, help to identify research objectives. Members also have access to the staff and facilities at Oregon State University, including two full-time faculty researchers and the UPRC director, Dr. Gerald Presley. Finally, the UPRC provides the potential for interaction and information exchange with other utilities and industry members.