Transition nearly complete
A few weeks ago, Horry Electric Cooperative announced electric bill payments would no longer be accepted at Horry Telephone’s location in Little River, effective the last business day of 2010. “We’re vacating the space Horry Telephone has graciously shared with us for the past several years, but that doesn’t mean the end of a local paystation option for our members in that area,” advised Danny Shelley, chief financial officer for Horry Electric, at the time the initial announcement was made.
Conway National Bank, which has a location right next door to HTC’s office in Little River/Longs, will begin accepting payments tomorrow, December 1. “Phase two of our transition from having a physical presence at the HTC office to having Conway National serving as a paystation for our members is underway,” says Shelley.
Since the initial announcement, Horry Electric has been proactively making sure everyone in the area knows about the change. “The nearly 4,000 members we see each month have gotten used to being able to go to the HTC office to do business with us and we want to make sure they know we are not completely abandoning them,” says Jodi L. Braziel, office manager for Horry Electric. “They will still have a local option when it comes to paying their electric bill in person.”
“In addition to notifying members through traditional media and communications outlets, signs were posted at the counter and at the drive-through at HTC’s Little River office,” says Shelley. “We’ve also made a point of making sure they see the sign and have been distributing flyers so their family members are also aware,” he adds.
Signs have been posted at the Conway National Branch office on Highway 9 in Little River to let their customers know Horry Electric bill payments are being accepted. Throughout the month of December, electric bill payments will be accepted at Conway National and at the HTC office. “So far, the transition process is going smoothly,” says Braziel. “We’ve tried to cover all the bases and we think Conway National Bank starting to accept payments in December will help keep the final steps in the transition process from being disruptive and abrupt.”
One confusing element in the transition is what each business considers the last day of business in 2010 and the first day of business in 2011. “New Year’s Day falls on a weekend, so Horry Electric observes December 31 as a holiday, while HTC does not, ” says Braziel. “The good news is that Conway National Bank observes it as a floating holiday so Horry Electric members will be able to make payments if they need to do so on the last day of 2010.”