WHEN COVID-19 BECAME A THREAT to our community, the Board of Trustees took immediate action and announced that all disconnects for regular and Advance Pay accounts would be held until further notice. Shortly after their decision, the Governor announced he was asking all utilities to do the same. At that time, penalties and late fees applied.
“The Governor has not lifted the provision for late fees and penalties, but the Board of Trustees of Horry Electric has unanimously taken action to discontinue late fees and penalties during the month of April,” announced Danny Shelley, executive vice president and CEO. “It’s an effort to further help members impacted by the COVID-19,” he continued.
As the Coronavirus crisis has evolved, the Board of Trustees and co-op employees have been proactively searching for more ways to provide relief to members.
“In addition to eliminating the late fees and penalties, we are happy to announce we are reducing the Wholesale Power Cost Adjustment Rate to zero,” said Shelley.
The total savings for both actions is more than $650,000.
On top of all those savings, the Board of Trustees has decided that Capital Credit distribution will proceed as planned in mid-April, with a few changes. “The total Capital Credit distribution impact for our members is more than 3 million dollars,” said Shelley. Individual Capital Credit distribution of $25 or more will be delivered to members in the form of a check. Amounts less than that will be applied to member electric accounts as a credit.
“We hope this is good news for our members and I applaud our Board of Trustees with taking these actions,” said Shelley. “These are big business decisions, but you can rest assured the best interest of our members; our communities and our co-op are at the heart of everything being done.”
Although the co-op is not disconnecting and is eliminating late fees and penalties, alerts and reminders about account status and energy use are continuing. Members are advised to monitor their energy use and keep up with payments to the best of their ability. “When this crisis is over, we will have to resume disconnects and we don’t want anyone to be so far behind they can’t recover,” cautions Shelley.
Members are still responsible for paying for the electricity they use. “Your cooperative cannot provide free electricity,” says Shelley. “If we did, your fellow members would have to pick up the tab because we are a not-for-profit, member-owned company that operates on a cost of service basis,” he continued. “So we urge you to keep paying on time. Don’t let your bill grow.”
“We want to assure members that we are here to keep the power flowing and to provide the services we can during this time of social distancing,” said Shelley. “We urge members to stay in touch with us through using the MyEnergy Online member service portal; engaging with us via social media; reading any eBlasts we send out; emailing us or by simply picking up the phone and giving us a call,” he added.