BURGAW — Four County EMC’s 63rd Annual Membership Meeting was held Monday, Oct. 8, at Elizabethtown Middle School gym. Members learned about Cooperative business practices and enjoyed community fellowship and musical entertainment by The Dove Brothers and comical entertainment by David Browning “The Mayberry Deputy.”
Three directors were re-elected to three-year terms on the Cooperative’s board. They are, along with their Directorate District, S. Eugene Jordan, West Pender; J. Steven Matthis, West Sampson; and Ronald Allen, North Bladen. Franklin Williams, president of the Board of Directors, addressed the membership and acknowledged that this year marks the 75th Anniversary of Four County EMC. He spoke about the history of the Cooperative and the progress and development they have made throughout their 75 years of service to the membership.
In his address, CEO Mitch Keel announced that the Board of Directors has approved a Capital Credit refund of $593,000 dollars representing 50 percent of the capital credits on the books for 1983, and 4% of capital credits from margins generated in 2011. Members will receive capital credit refunds in early December. “We are pleased that the Cooperative’s financial condition allows this refund to our members,” stated Keel.
Keel announced to the membership that the Cooperative has been able to hold electric rates steady over the last four years, but for 2013 the rates will finally have to be raised. “Wholesale power costs from our power supplier, NCEMC, have gone up every year over the past four years. Retail rates will increase by approximately 5 ½ percent beginning in January 2013. For the average homeowner this will cost an extra $7 per month. Whenever the power bill goes up beyond what we can absorb we have no choice but to pass the costs along,” stated Keel.
In closing, Keel invited members to attend a fall Community Meeting in their community to get valuable information about what’s going on at the Cooperative and how to save energy and money on their power bill.
Children enjoyed creative stations as well as a balloon twister provided by Festivities with Flair of Burgaw.
Many happy members walked away with door prizes at this year’s meeting. The following is a list of some of the winners and their respective prizes:
• John Hickman of Bladenboro was the Grand Prize winner – 2004 GMC-Sierra pick-up truck.
• Marilyn Purdie of Clarkton – $500 power bill credit
• Judy Peterson, Elizabethtown; Alton Thornton, Sr., Harrells; Greg Packer, Bladenboro; Joseph Thompson, Clarkton – $100 power bill credits
Additional energy credits, a Four County EMC PowerGuard surge protection package, and a Carolina Country gift basket were given away as well as 25 electric appliances.
There were 626 registered members at this year’s meeting, and with their guests, the gymnasium was filled with over 1,200 people.
Four County EMC is a member-owned electric cooperative serving more than 32,000 members in Bladen, Columbus, Duplin, Onslow, Pender and Sampson counties.