Capital Credits Retirements Checks
I hope all of you had a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! As we begin the New Year, I would like to take this time to briefly reflect on the year 2021 and summarize your Cooperative’s plans for the year 2022.
As you know, the Cooperative announced a retail rate decrease for all Cooperative members in January 2021 that was estimated to save members approximately $7.4 million per year. At the time this article is being written, residential rates have decreased approximately 10% in 2021.
In 2021, the Cooperative continued the necessary investments in the distribution system in order to provide members with a reliable electric supply. Some of the investments included testing poles, treating poles, replacing degraded poles, rebuilding aging infrastructure and trimming/clearing in the vegetation management program. In fact, the Cooperative completed trimming and clearing of vegetation in the Bradley, Equality, Rosiclare, Sesser, Walpole and Webb substations. As we have certainly experienced in the past with major storms, a sound vegetation management program is crucial to your Cooperative’s ability to reduce risks and outages associated with major weather events and to maintain a reliable electric supply for members.
In summary, the Cooperative expects to end the year 2021 in sound financial condition and deliver over 785 million kilowatt-hours to all of you as Cooperative members. In addition, last month your Cooperative announced the retirement and return of $1.77 million of Capital Credits to the members. The capital credits that were returned were from the years 1984, 2019 and 2020. Over the past eleven years, your Cooperative has retired and returned approximately $20 million to Cooperative members.
In 2022, your Cooperative will continue to make the necessary investments in the distribution facilities that serve your energy by rebuilding aging infrastructure, replacing degraded poles and performing other maintenance activities including pole testing, regulator maintenance, breaker maintenance and sectionalizing in order to help ensure a safe and reliable electric supply. In fact, the maintenance work will begin in early January with the testing and treatment of approximately 8,000 poles. The Cooperative will also continue to make significant investments in the vegetation management program that is crucial to the reliability of service that you receive. Cooperative members will receive more details regarding the 2022 vegetation management program in next month’s article.
I’m also pleased to inform you that the Cooperative will continue the current, decreased retail rates that went into effect in January 2021 which is saving Cooperative members millions each year. At this time, there are no plans for a retail rate increase in 2022.
Your Cooperative will continue to work diligently to improve and enhance the level of service and reliability that you receive. On behalf of the Trustees and all employees, we want you to know that your Cooperative is committed to providing reliable and quality service while keeping rates affordable. We thank you for the opportunity to serve you.
See you next month and as always, “We’ll keep the lights on for you.”