2021 Capital Credit Refunds - Carolina Country
From Donnie Spivey, CEO and Executive Vice President September 2021
From Donnie Spivey, CEO and Executive Vice President
September 2021
Donnie Spivey

Donnie Spivey, CEO and Executive Vice President

Pee Dee Electric’s Board of Directors recently voted to return approximately $650,000 in capital credits to cooperative member-owners who were served during 1994.

Each year, the Board of Directors consider whether to retire capital credits based on the cooperative’s financial health. Member-owners served during 1994 can expect to receive their capital credit refund check during the month of September. Capital credit refunds are also known as the cooperative’s profits or margins. Because Pee Dee Electric is a not-for-profit utility, margins are returned to the people the cooperative serves. The cooperative expects to distribute checks to more than 6,700 current and former members. These checks will be mailed on Sept. 15, 2021.

Co-op Membership Pays

Did you know you actually own Pee Dee Electric? As a member-owner, you are entitled to a share of the cooperative’s margins, also known as the co-op’s profits. These are called capital credits and are returned to active and former members in the form of a check.

Over the past ten years, your cooperative has returned more than $10 million to members in the form of capital credit refunds. When capital credits are returned to members, you see the return on your investment. This is one of the benefits of being served by a not-for-profit utility!

Sometimes members move away, and we can no longer reach them. They are still entitled to capital credits. Members who had an active account in 1994, but are no longer served by Pee Dee Electric, will receive a check for their portion of the retired capital credits, assuming we have an accurate mailing address.

Newer members who Pee Dee Electric did not serve in 1994 will also eventually receive capital credits (assuming the cooperative remains financially healthy), but it may take a few years. Capital credits are considered to be a return on the members’ investment in the system. Each month members pay their electric bill, they are helping to pay for improvements to the cooperative’s electric system that keep the lights on. The immediate payback is in the form of increased reliability and lower rates.

Why Don’t All Members Receive a Credit?

We are excited to announce the return of approximately $650,000 to those who were Pee Dee Electric members in 1994. While this is exciting news if the cooperative served you during that year, what about members who joined the cooperative after that? The answer is—your turn will come one day! You’ll eventually receive capital credits too, but it may take a little longer.

Here’s why: Pee Dee Electric was founded in 1939 by a group of farmers and local leaders in our area. The for-profit utilities, at the time, refused to invest the money to bring the life-changing benefits of electricity to rural parts of the state. These farmers and other community leaders pooled their resources and formed an electric cooperative with the assistance of the Rural Electrification Administration (REA). Their mission was to begin building power lines and substations so rural people could enjoy the many benefits of having electricity in their homes and businesses. As you know, they were very successful in doing so!

Many years later, the founders of the cooperative received a refund for their investment, called a capital credit. This was a return on their investment. That same philosophy still applies to the return of capital credits today.

Many cooperative members don’t realize that we’re a not-for-profit utility. Every month you pay your bill, you are helping to finance not just the purchase and production of power, but improvements to the electric system that keep the lights on. You are investing in YOUR cooperative. Your immediate payback is in the form of increased reliability and affordable rates. You don’t receive a refund the first few years you are a member because that wouldn’t be fair to the older members who have paid for the current system. Each generation of cooperative members contributes to building equity in the cooperative and is rewarded with a capital credit refund. This system is unique to not-for-profit electric cooperatives. People served by for-profit utilities don’t reap these benefits.

Our local presence in the communities we serve is one of our strongest assets. The payment of capital credits is evidence that Pee Dee Electric is at work for our members, making sound business decisions for the good of our membership and the cooperative. Your cooperative, locally owned and operated, is dedicated to providing reliable electricity and exceptional service while focusing on value for our members and support within our local communities.

capital credits

Learn more

Get more information on how Capital Credits work or check for unclaimed capital credits on our website.

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