$900,000 Capital Credit Retirement Approved
Cooperative Retires $900,000 in Capital Credits to Members from 1996, 2013
St. Croix Electric Cooperative has returned more than $16 million to members since 1963
HAMMOND, Wis., Oct. 21, 2016 – St. Croix Electric Cooperative will be returning $900,000 to current and former members who paid for electricity from the Co-op in 1996 and/or 2013. The payment – also called a retirement – is for margins allocated to members in those years. Former members or current members receiving more than $100 were mailed a check on Oct. 20. Current members with retirements under $100 will see a bill credit on their Oct. 19 or Nov. 1 bill.
The retirement is a full payout of equity capital credits to all members who paid for electricity from SCEC in 1996, and a partial retirement of credits to current members who paid for electricity from SCEC in 2013.
“SCEC is a not-for-profit cooperative, owned by the members it serves. We do not receive additional revenue from outside sources, such as the sale of stock,” said SCEC President/CEO Mark Pendergast. “Our primary source of revenue comes from the members who pay their electric bills. At the end of every year, any excess revenue is allocated to each member who paid for electricity that year in proportion to the amount they paid for their electricity.”
The allocated margins (excess revenue) are held as equity for a period of time - usually 20 years - to make it possible for the Cooperative to obtain future operational loans. The Cooperative’s Board of Directors has set a policy to retire to members at least 6 percent of total equity each year, as financial conditions allow. In 1963, SCEC retired its first round of equity capital credits to members. SCEC has been able to annually retire capital credits to members ever since then for a total of more than $16 million returned to members.
“The total amount of capital credits the Cooperative has returned to members since 1963 is significant,” said SCEC Chairman of the Board Bill Peavey. “Being able to annually retire margins from past years is a sign of the strong financial health of our Cooperative. Additionally, because of the Cooperative business model, we have returned $16 million to residents of our local communities in and around St. Croix County. It is the real-life example that St. Croix Electric Cooperative is owned by the members it serves.”
Any member with questions regarding their allocations or capital credit retirements, are encouraged to contact SCEC at 715-796-7000. Retirements to former members are mailed to the address on-file at the Cooperative. It is important for former members to contact SCEC to make sure their information is current. SCEC makes reasonable efforts to find former members, including publishing a list of “missing members” in local newspapers every July. However, equity capital credits not claimed after four years are allocated to the Co-op’s youth scholarship program. Since 1981, dependents of SCEC members have been awarded nearly $250,000 in scholarships toward their college educations.
National Co-op Month
October is recognized as National Co-op Month by 30,000 cooperatives in the United States. Nationwide, cooperatives create 2.1 million jobs and generate more than $650 billion in sales and other revenue, annually. This October, SCEC has been hosting “Fridays at St. Croix Electric Cooperative” where members are invited to visit the office for refreshments and register to win a $50 bill credit each week. On Oct. 7, apples and cider were purchased from SCEC member Glenwood Orchard (Glenwood City); on Oct. 21, one pumpkin per membership was offered to visitors, purchased from SCEC member White Pine Berry Farm (River Falls). Members unable to visit the office during business hours have a chance to answer a Co-op Trivia question each Friday for an opportunity to win another $50 bill credit.
Commitment to Community Grant Applications Available
Since 2003, the SCEC Board of Directors has annually awarded Commitment to Community Grants to help local organizations in serving the unmet humanitarian, social and educational needs within the Cooperative’s general service area. Applications are reviewed twice each year and the next deadline is Oct. 31. More information about the grant program and application is available at the SCEC office in Hammond and online at www.scecnet.net under “Community”, then “Commitment to Community Grants.”
Phones, Tablets for Operation Gratitude
Beginning this week, SCEC will be accepting unwanted smartphones, cell phones and tablets. Collected items will be donated to Operation Gratitude who will earn money from recycling the electronics and use the funds toward providing care packages to solders, veterans and first responders. Items can be brought to St. Croix Electric Cooperative at 1925 Ridgeway St., Hammond, Monday through Friday, 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. More information about Operation Gratitude can be found online at www.OperationGratitude.com.
About St. Croix Electric Cooperative
St. Croix Electric Cooperative (SCEC) was incorporated on Nov. 5, 1937, as a result of five farmers determined to bring electricity to rural St. Croix County, Wis. On May 24, 1939, electricity was delivered to the first account. Today, the Cooperative operates 1,765 miles of distribution lines that power more than 11,000 meters. SCEC helps members realize the Cooperative Difference through Commitment to Community grants, scholarships, rebates, and solutions to conserve and use energy wisely. More information is available online at www.scecnet.net, and on social media: @StCroixElecCoop (Twitter) and St. Croix County Energizer (Facebook). St. Croix Electric Cooperative is an equal-opportunity provider.