Concern for Community
It was my pleasure to shine the light on SEMO Electric Cooperative’s members, board and employees at the Association of Missouri Electric Cooperatives’ annual meeting October 7-9 in Branson. As you will see on another page inside this month’s Rural Missouri, I participated in a CEO panel to explain how we are working to meet challenges related to safety, grassroots activities and communications. I was able to discuss SEMO Electric’s commitment to safety, show a few photos from various cooperative events and talk about our strategic initiatives. As I have said in the past, we aren’t perfect but we are paying attention as we work harder and smarter to deliver safe, reliable and low-cost electricity to your home, farm or business. It is nice to be able to show and tell – humbly – others about the cooperative. Plus, I learned some new ideas during the roundtable discussion.
2016 Increase Capped at $2 per Month
SEMO Electric Cooperative’s base charge – service availability charge – will increase a flat $2 per month for all service classifications in 2016. The co-op’s charge per unit of energy (or kilowatt-hour) will remain the same for all service classifications. All adjustments will be reflected on bill statements due February 10, 2015. The base charge gives the cooperative a way of recovering fixed costs versus the up and down kWh charge that fluctuates with hot or cold weather. Regardless if electricity is used, the cooperative must cover fixed costs such as transformers, line maintenance, taxes on property, administrative costs, etc. The base charge is a more consistent method of recovering fixed costs and it helps the cooperative hold its overall rates down. There is video to explain the service availability charge at gosemo.com. As a side note, SEMO Electric has not increased its charge per unit of energy – 8.79 cents per kilowatt-hour – for residential members for nearly three years.
Simple, but Complex
“It’s more complex than I thought.” This was the reaction from a SEMO Electric member-owner who recently toured the operations center at Sikeston. “I was thinking it was just a few people answering the phone and a couple of linemen.” When visitors get a behind-the-scenes look at the teamwork and collaboration across the cooperative’s departments that is required to provide electric service to SEMO’s member-owners, it seems the reaction is often “wow.” At the end of the day, you just want to flip the switch. Eat the meal. Wear the jeans. How the power gets to your home, how the burger gets on your plate or how the cotton gets in your jeans, good businesses make it seem simple. Like most businesses, we work to make it seem simple. If you would like a tour of our operations center, please ask the next time you visit or call for an appointment.
Thanksgiving shout-outs to Doug Libla, Kyle Aubuchon, Mike Ice, Tim Woods, Don Rone, Gary and Alice Towe, Robbie Cochran and M Kay Supply. Have a blessed Thanksgiving.
Be smart. Act safe.