Do you ever get a sense of accomplishment when you pay your electric bill? Probably not. For most of us, paying our PVREA electric bill doesn’t feel like a financial accomplishment - like paying extra principal on your mortgage, or adding more cash into your savings. But it should.
Webster’s Dictionary defines investment as “the commitment of funds with a view to minimizing risk and safeguarding capital while earning a return.” Every time you pay your bill, you’re investing money in the co-op and helping us provide reliable, affordable, and safe electricity.
What’s even sweeter is that you get some of that investment back in the form of member credits – it’s your slice of the pie.
Electric co-ops differ from other utilities. PVREA operates at cost— at the end of each year after all the co-op’s bills have been paid and all expenses considered, the amount of money left over is called a margin. The co-op uses those margins to provide working capital at the co-op, but since it’s your investment, the Board of Directors earmarks that money for you by allocating funds toward your membership, which you get back later.
This month you’re getting your member credits. PVREA is paying out $3 million to members. You’ll either receive yours as a check in the mail or as a bill credit. If your allocations have built up to at least $10 worth of member credits, you’re getting your slice of the pie this month. If you haven’t accumulated up to $10 yet, we’ll keep allocating your member credits and will pay it back to you when you’ve reached over $10.
In previous years, the co-op paid credits by mailing checks. This year, we’re paying credits under $100 as bill credits to save the co-op on printing, postage and administrative costs. This is just one of the ways we’re working to control costs and save money to keep rates affordable – which is one of the ways PVREA is able to hold the line on rates and not have any rate increases for this year or in 2019!
The co-op belongs to the communities we serve, which is why any excess revenue is shared back with our members in the form of members credits - another great value of being a co-op member. Enjoy your slice of the pie!
President & CEO