Every election is an opportunity for voters to engage in one of their most fundamental rights: the right to vote. As a member-owner of an electric cooperative, you have a unique ability to hold your elected officials accountable for their positions on issues that impact rural North Carolinians. Collectively, this effort is called “Co-ops Vote,” by our national and statewide organizations. You will notice images related to this campaign on our social media channels and website as we honor your role in the voting process.
Randolph EMC monitors candidates’ positions on co-op issues including broadband, economic development, infrastructure and more. Randolph EMC also works on your behalf to bring a greater awareness of these issues to our officials. As we have worked to enhance our relationships with Congressional and state legislators, we have witnessed elected officials achieve a deeper understanding of many rural issues. While we acknowledge that there is still much to be done in Congress and at the NC General Assembly, we appreciate your increased participation at the polls because it has made a difference.
This year, Randolph EMC has advocated for our members on several issues, including the following:
1Asking members of Congress to co-sponsor the Flexible Financing for Rural America Act (H.R. 2244) and encouraging them to pass this important legislation. The bill would save co-ops, and therefore our members, as much as $10 billion if we are able to take advantage of current low interest rates. Congress needs to allow cooperatives access to the same low interest rates that other businesses enjoy to reprice Rural Utility Service debt without penalty.
2Opposing language inserted into bills at the state level which would pass “make-ready,” pole replacement costs on to our member-owners. While Randolph EMC supports the expansion of broadband in rural parts of our state, we ask our legislators to expand it responsibly without passing on the costs of such services to our members.
How to get involved in this year’s elections
This year, 2021, is what is known as an off-year election. This means that you cannot vote for the President or even members of Congress or the state legislature. However, Tuesday, November 2, is still an important date because it is the day of the general election for municipal races. If local school policy, road or infrastructure repairs, or town taxes impact your life, then learning about the municipal elections in your area will benefit you. Your local Board of Elections has all the information you need to participate in this year’s elections. Visit NCSBE.gov to look up your voter record, learn which districts you belong to, confirm where to vote, and more.
Thank you for educating yourself on the basics of voting, and for making sure that the co-op voice is heard through our #CoopsVote campaign.