New-Mac Electric Announces $1.5 Million in Capital Credits and Power Cost Refunds
New-Mac Electric Cooperative marked the co-op’s 2016 Annual Meeting by distributing nearly $1.25 million in capital credit refunds, and announcing that members would also receive $250,000 in power cost credits.
Mitch McCumber, New-Mac chief executive officer, told the meeting Saturday at Crowder College in Neosho that over the past 19 straight years, the co-op has returned a total of $23,000,000 in capital credit payments and power cost adjustments back to member-customers.
The capital credit refunds go to people who were New-Mac members during 1998, and are based on their electric usage. Members who didn’t pick up their checks at the meeting will receive them in the mail. The power cost adjustment will appear as credits on the bills the members receive in December.
“This is just another example of ‘doing the right thing’ – what we do for our members each and every day at New-Mac Electric,” McCumber said. “As I was growing up, my dad told me to always ‘do the right thing.’ Best piece of advice I ever received.”
McCumber also reported that, while the process is not complete, New-Mac is working to avoid having a general rate increase to members in 2017, but would very likely have to raise rates in 2018. New-Mac has had only four general rate increases in the past 25 years. McCumber said the co-op will provide members more details about next year’s rates in the January co-op newsletter.
In his address, McCumber cited several examples of the co-op “doing the right thing,” including an update on the co-op’s new leadership program which provides college scholarships for graduating seniors in 10 area high schools.
The co-op also sponsors an annual contest to send high school students on leadership trips to Washington, D.C., and the state Capitol in Jefferson City. The winner of the national Youth Tour contest – Lani Ogle of Sarcoxie – shared a video at the annual meeting of her experience visiting the U.S. Capitol.
McCumber reported that in a recent member satisfaction survey, New-Mac Electric scored an 87 out of 100 on the American Customer Satisfaction Index, which is well above the national co-op average.
“Our 87 ACSI score is the second-highest among 49 co-ops surveyed in Missouri, Oklahoma and Iowa,” McCumber told the meeting. “Thanks to our members, that’s higher satisfaction than even big players like Apple computers, Coca-Cola, Wal-Mart, even higher than Cadillac.”
McCumber emphasized that New-Mac continues to make greater use of renewable energy, including purchasing power from huge wind turbine farms in Kansas, Oklahoma and Missouri that supplied 12% of members’ electric needs in 2015.
“As we use more renewable energy, we must make sure that all members share in the cost of our electric utility system, because we all use that infrastructure to get our electricity,” McCumber said. “That’s what we mean by ‘Fairness Down the Lines.'”
Citing New-Mac’s annual report, McCumber said that the past year was financially sound for the co-op, with total revenues of over $39 million and total assets growing to more than $110 million.
The report indicates that New-Mac’s wholesale power suppliers – Associated Electric in Springfield and KAMO Power in Vinita – have spent over $1.2-billion over the past twenty years to achieve a 90% reduction in power plant emissions.
McCumber also reported that New-Mac expects to spend approximately $2.5 million this year – the most ever – on right-of-way brush clearing along power lines to maintain electric service reliability.
He said the co-op has continued to make steady progress on projects to improve the electric grid, such as line construction and re-conductoring, substation upgrades and pole change-outs, and suffered no major severe weather damage during the past year.
New-Mac Electric, headquartered in Neosho, Mo., serves over 17,000 member accounts primarily in Newton, McDonald and Jasper counties.