Checks or bill credits are coming in May to members of Blue Ridge Electric Membership Corporation, thanks to a $4 million capital credits retirement approved earlier this year by the board of directors.
Checks mailed earlier this week to members due a capital credits refund of $35 or more. Members due less than $35 are receiving their capital credits refunds in the form of a credit on their May electric bill. The amount of each refund is based on that member’s individual usage of electricity.
Each member’s refund is twice as much as the amount received last year, which is welcome news for members. The average check amount is $105 and more than 24,500 checks were issued. Additionally, more than 35,500 members are receiving credits on their May electric bills mailing throughout this month. The average credit amount is $15.
Blue Ridge Electric members received notification about capital credits in their member newsletter inside the May issue of Carolina Country magazine and each member is also receiving a bill insert this month. Information is also available at www.BlueRidgeEMC.com and on the cooperative’s Facebook page.
Capital credits are a unique benefit for members of a cooperative. Each member is also an owner of Blue Ridge Electric, and that ownership is represented by capital credits.
Capital credits are the working capital of the cooperative, used for substations, power poles, lines and all the things necessary to provide reliable electricity until they’re retired in the form of a refund to members. Capital credits are a continuous cycle: the cooperative collects for current needs to deliver reliable electricity while returning funds collected in previous years.
Each year, the board of directors decides on a capital credits retirement based on the financial health of the cooperative.
Since its inception, Blue Ridge Electric has returned more than $40 million back to its members in annual capital credits retirements.
Blue Ridge Electric is a member owned electric cooperative serving some 74,000 members in Caldwell, Watauga, Ashe, and Alleghany counties as well as parts of Wilkes, Avery, and Alexander counties.