Note: James P. “Pat” Howle, executive vice president and CEO of Horry Electric, shared his thoughts about the sense of pride we all feel on July 4th and the one he hopes we all feel for our cooperative in his column in the July 2018 edition of South Carolina Living magazine.
It’s all about relationships
No other day of the year inspires quite the sense of patriotism as Independence Day. From the annual F-16 and vintage military aircraft Salute from the Shore along the Grand Strand to the local parades, the family picnics and neighborhood gatherings, all the way through to the grand finale of the fireworks displays, you can’t help but feel a swell of pride.
Even when the fireworks fade, the spark of patriotism lingers in our hearts and minds. I hope you feel that same kind of pride about your cooperative. After all, you are a member and that makes all the difference.
Many businesses use the word “member” to describe their customers. Businesses like Sam’s Club or Costco or even American Express use the word to give customers a sense of belonging. You pay a fee to buy their goods or services, but that is really all you get out of the “membership.” You have no right to vote for representatives on the Board of Trustees or the chance to participate in the business in a meaningful way.
We are connected
Co-ops of all types are founded on seven cooperative principles that give us guidance and strategic direction. If we do it right, a strong relationship is established between the co-op and its members.
We want to get it right. Our relationship with you is as important to us as the quality of electric service we provide. It is fundamental to our core business.
We are connected to our members in a variety of ways. There is a business relationship that serves you (the member) and the co-op. Since we are solely owned by people in the
community, we have a mutual interest to ensure that members, the co-op and our community do well and prosper.
Our professional relationship makes research, education and training critical functions for the employees, trustees and management team at Horry Electric. We are accountable to our members. Falling short in any of these three areas is unacceptable.
Communication is key
In our personal relationship with our members, communication is key. As an owner of the co-op, you have a right to know how it operates and how decisions are made that directly impact you.
One of the best ways to keep up with what is going on is doing exactly what you’re doing now–reading South Carolina Living magazine. We also have a web site members can access, plus a few social media channels to share news and information.
Being open and transparent in our communications and conducting business with integrity and fairness builds trust. We know we have to earn that trust every single day.
Powerful human connection
Most of you know our history. We’ve been rooted in this community for more than 75 years. Our business model is solid, and our success can be attributed to the human factor.
It takes all of us: the employees, the management team, the board of trustees, the members and our community to make sure the principles and values we share do not
fade over time. You get electric service from us, but we get our power from you – our members!
The June 2017 edition of South Carolina Living magazine will be delivered to the mailboxes of subscribing members mid-month. Horry Electric’s local content, as well as the main part of the magazine, are both available online NOW!
Horry Electric local highlights include:
CEO column – In case you missed it: Quorum met, another successful event – Annual Meeting report
Horry News – WIRE’s gifts will comfort displaced seniors; Horry native newest members of Trust Board; Lineman Rodeo results
Operation Round Up report and sign-up form
Restoring service after the storm – goal is to get service back on ASAP and what to do if your electric service is damaged
Annual Meeting photographic highlights
Community Solar – update on the program, featuring members who jumped at the chance to participate!
The April 2017 edition of South Carolina Living magazine will be delivered to mailboxes of subscribing members mid-month. Horry Electric’s local content, as well as the main part of the magazine, are both available online NOW!
CEO Column: Find out what you’re missing at the Annual Meeting
Annual Meeting Map of Registration and Voting locations at Coastal Carolina
Beat the Peak! Sign up today and Get the Message!
Rural Lady of the Year Feature: Janell Lewis becomes 39th Rural Lady of the Year
After-hours and weekends, we’re still ‘on call’ Horry Electric’s System Control is on duty, 24/7/365.
Co-op returning $3.3 million in capital credits to members
At the beginning of the year, James P. “Pat” Howle, executive vice president and CEO of Horry Electric Cooperative, announced the co-op was ‘very close’ to being able to offer Community Solar. “We built a community solar array on our property across the street from our main office in Conway last month,” he said in his monthly column in the January edition of South Carolina Living magazine.”As soon as everything is in place, we’ll be letting members know that we’ve begun accepting subscriptions to purchase a share of the energy that will be produced and distributed through the power grid.
The time is NOW!
Access to community solar through Horry Electric Cooperative is easy. “We’re doing all of the heavy lifting,” says Howle. “Our plan takes the worry out of construction, maintenance and even zoning restrictions.”
The community solar array has been built and has already started producing electricity. All members have to do is decide how many blocks of solar power they want to subscribe to on a monthly basis. One block is equal to 150 kWh per month and the maximum number of blocks available per member is 5. “We have to cap the number of blocks per member so more members will have a chance to participate,” says Howle.
A subscription agreement needs to be completed by each participating member and a one-time, up-front, non-refundable charge of $100 will be collected for each block subscribed to by the member. “Participating members will begin seeing a monthly charge of $25 per block on their electric bill and a monthly credit based on how much energy is produced by the solar far,” explains Howle. The average is expected to be 150 kWH.
SPECIAL OFFER TO THE FIRST 100 MEMBERS TO SIGN UP TO PARTICIPATE!
Horry Electric will waive the $100 non-refundable upfront charge to the first 100 members to sign up for one block of power from Community Solar. If a member wants to buy more than one block, they will be required to pay the upfront $100 non-refundable fee per additional block.
Community Solar is available to any Horry Electric member with regular residential service on a first-come, first-serve basis. Advance Pay services are ineligible at this time.
The March 2017 edition of South Carolina Living magazine will be delivered to mailboxes of subscribing members mid-month. Horry Electric’s local content, as well as the main part of the magazine, are both available online NOW!
Horry Electric local highlights include:
CEO Column – The benefits of Community Solar
Horry News – Operation Round Up update; Looking for teachers for Bright Ideas and Unclaimed Capital Credits posted online
Horry Extra – Call before you dig and Right-of-way Map
South Carolina’s electric cooperatives and other utilities are warning that all-time low temperatures forecast for Thursday and Friday mornings may result in a record demand for electricity.
Predicted temperatures in the pre-dawn hours Thursday range from single digits in the Upstate to the low teens in the Midlands and Pee Dee. Below freezing temperatures are also forecast for the Lowcountry. All South Carolina counties are under a wind chill advisory from 7 p.m. Wednesday until 1 p.m. Thursday. Wind chill values in the Upstate could dip below zero both mornings.
Historically, cold weather creates the highest residential electricity use in South Carolina. The most critical hours for utilities supplying power are the hours from 6-9 a.m. when demand is at its peak.
“We have enough (power) capacity to meet our demand,” said David Logeman, director of power supply at Central Electric Power Cooperative in Columbia, which provides wholesale electricity to all 20 of the South Carolina’s member-owned cooperatives. “However, weather events like this mean our system will probably operate at maximum capacity over an extended period.”
Consumers are urged to be mindful of their energy use during the hours of peak demand.
“If each household follows a few simple steps to conserve electricity, those reductions will have a meaningful impact,” said Mike Couick, president and CEO of The Electric Cooperatives of South Carolina. “Using less power means less stress on our systems and increased reliability of service.”
Members can use less power by following these steps in their homes:
Turn off all but essential internal and external lights
Unplug non-essential appliances and devices
Set thermostats on 68 degrees or lower
Minimize or postpone hot water use
Ensure heating and air conditioning vents are open and unobstructed
Limit use of major power-consuming equipment such as dishwashers, washers, and dryers from 6-9 a.m.