Annual Meeting Highlights Technology, Foundation
The co-op highlighted new technologies for members and its Operation RoundUP program before awarding prizes at its 78th Annual Meeting on May 3 at Glad Tidings Church in Morehead City.
Doug Fulcher, president of the nine-member board of directors, reviewed last year’s financials, including a record $5.4 million dollars in excess margins (capital credits) that were returned to current and former co-op members. Last year, the cooperative had revenues of more than 66 million dollars, and provided energy to more than 40,000 accounts. We connected 478 new services and maintained 2,379 miles of overhead power line and 63 miles of transmission line.
“Our financial position remains strong, and we work hard to keep it that way, while providing safe, reliable and affordable energy to you,” Fulcher said.
New CEO Jake Joplin talked about the cooperative’s heritage and the community that brought electricity to less-populated areas in the 1940s.
“Carteret-Craven Electric Cooperative has a proud heritage that started with a community working together,” Joplin said. “While our tools and equipment have changed through the years, we are still working together to accomplish what one cannot do alone, and we are still your local cooperative, owned by you, our members.”
Joplin also explained the cooperatives newer payment options, the PowerPay24 online payment portal and the accompanying payment app. Soon, members will be able to prepay for electricity and receive text or email messages about their bills.
West Carteret High School’s jazz band and chorus entertained before the official meeting. Dinner was served by CCEC’s Relay for Life team and a host of employee volunteers. Information booths featured the cooperative’s line safety display and Carteret-Craven Electric Foundation, which manages members’ Operation RoundUp donations.
Featured speaker for the evening was Rev. Gene McLendon, executive director of Hope Mission Ministries. The local nonprofit organization provides an array of services for the “working poor” and has received grants from the Carteret-Craven Electric Foundation to provide emergency funding for needy individuals. Money for grants comes from members who volunteer to round up their electric bills to the nearest dollar each month.
State Rep. Pat McElraft also spoke briefly at the meeting and praised the co-op’s foundation and members who participate in RoundUP.
The meeting closed with the awarding of prizes. Lois Sutton of Bogue was the winner of a Ford Ranger pickup truck retired from the co-op’s fleet, and Helen Marie Ambrose of Havelock won six months of free electricity. Cash prizes also were awarded, as were cash from a 50/50 drawing for the co-op’s Relay for Life team and a prize bundle from Operation RoundUp.
The meeting also brought to a close the annual director election. This year, three directors, Deloria Irby, Arland Bell and Fred Fulcher, ran unopposed and retain their seats on the board.