During the end of the year as the holiday season approaches, many of us reflect on the past year and think about our community. The term community has various meanings for each of us. For electric cooperatives such as Eastern Illini Electric Cooperative, community is our members, employees, and the territory in which we provide service.
This month, we highlight the return of over $1.1 million in capital credits to our members. Please see page 2 for more information. The return of member equity in the form of capital credit payments is a tangible investment return to the larger EIEC community.
On page 4 we include information on our Youth to Washington Tour program. This is a great opportunity for youth in our community to learn about state and national government while interacting with other cooperative youth from across Illinois and the United States.
In 2019, there will be elections for four of the nine EIEC Director districts. Three of these districts encompass our southern territory, and the other district includes our northeast area. We will provide more information in future issues of this publication, and on our website and other social media. If you are interested in additional information about the election, please contact us.
At our October board meeting, your Directors agreed to return any excess operating margins (over and above our budgeted levels) to members in 2018 in the last billing cycle that includes December usage. We expect the total to be returned to members to be more than $600,000, however the final amount will depend on the revenue and expenses for the final few calendar months.
We have preliminary results from the member survey completed during October. Overall, you rated your cooperative very highly (a score of 89 out of 100 on the customer satisfaction benchmark). Thank you! Member feedback was also provided in a variety of other areas. This information provides us areas to further improve member service as well.
Recently passed Illinois legislation has provided for renewable incentives for solar and wind installations. We have been following this issue closely. Although there are presently legal challenges as to whether cooperative members can participate in this program, EIEC continues to receive numerous inquiries relative to solar installations.
There are numerous solar developers active within Illinois and in our territory. If you are considering installing renewable energy, especially solar, please contact us early in the process, as we can help you with rate comparison information and analysis, along with helping you navigate the administrative processes.