April 2013

2013 Tree Trimming
As long as the lights are on you may not think much about SEMO Electric’s daily work to keep the power flowing. However, keeping the lights on is a 7/24/365 business – especially when you mix together trees and severe weather. 
Managing tree and vegetation growth near power lines is a proven method for reducing the frequency and severity of power service interruptions. SEMO Electric’s tree trimming is performed by trained personnel in accordance with standards set by OSHA (Occupational Health and Safety Administration) and ISA (International Society of Arboriculture).

Trees pruned in this manner are less susceptible to disease and insects, and the overall structure of the tree is stronger and more resistant to high winds and ice. Although the shape has been altered, it is recommended over topping or rounding of trees, which tends to promote quick re-growth of small, weakly attached branches.

As part of our commitment to keep the lights on, each year we trim different sections of SEMO Electric’s 2,500 miles of power lines. In 2013, SEMO Electric will focus tree trimming efforts around Anniston, Ardeola, Bloomfield, Delta, Dogwood, Idalia, Lilbourn, Miner, Vanduser and Wyatt.

2012 Property Taxes
Recently, I was asked if SEMO Electric pays property taxes and, if so, how much?  Here’s the answer.

Since SEMO Electric operates on a non-profit basis (margins in the form of capital credits are returned to members), it is exempt from state and federal income taxes. However, SEMO Electric must still pay sales and use taxes, employment taxes and property taxes.  Property taxes are paid on things such as real property (the land and buildings where are two offices and warehouses are located), vehicles and the more than 2,500 miles of distribution lines which bring electricity to you.

For 2012, SEMO Electric paid $519,333 (or $43,278 per month) in county property taxes. This represents a 196% increase over the past ten years. Following is a list of the 2012 county property taxes with the cooperative’s service area:

County                          2012
Bollinger                      $3,854
Cape Girardeau            $46,288
Mississippi                   $76,475
New Madrid                 $78,686
Scott                             $138,636
Stoddard                       $175,394
Total                             $519,333

Cooperative is Not-for-Profit
As member-owners and consumers of electricity, we are fortunate to be a part of a not-for-profit three-tiered cooperative system. What does “three-tiered” mean? In simple terms you are a member-owner of SEMO Electric, which owns its transmission company, which owns its generation company. Each tier works hard to meet the needs of its members as efficiently as possible – which is a huge advantage for all members. The goal is not to produce profits for distant shareholders, but to enhance your quality of life with safe, reliable and affordable electricity.

Be smart. Act safe.

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