Changes delayed one month

Rate changes announced at Annual Meeting now scheduled to be effective October 1

Members who attended the Annual Meeting of Members in April were first to hear the news about an adjustment in service charges and upcoming change in rates. In the May edition of South Carolina Living magazine, we followed up with members who weren’t able to attend the meeting.

As members ourselves, the management team, the trustees and employees of your cooperative are especially sensitive to passing along pricing information in a timely manner.

The background

It is a priority for all of us at Horry Electric to utilize resources to ensure excellent service to our members and, at the same time, maintain the financial position of the cooperative for our members.

In 2010, we announced board approval of a comprehensive evaluation of the cooperative’s rate structure. That research included a complete examination of our rates, our costs and our load factor, combined with a thorough assessment of possible future risks and opportunities to either verify our rates were where they needed to be or if adjustments needed to be made.

Adjustments necessary

The research revealed an immediate need to adjust facilities charges so they were consistent with the actual cost of service to each meter. We need to be less dependent on kWh charges to cover the cost of providing service. By making those adjustments and incorporating the existing Wholesale Power Adjustment into rates, we can effectively ‘zero’ out wholesale power costs/kWh without dramatically increasing rates.

The cost per kWh for the first 200 and next 800 are actually going to be lower because the updated facilities charges are allowing us to collect the actual expense of providing service to the meter, which offsets the rates.

The current amount residential members with single-phase service are charged for service to their meter is $8. For three-phase service, it is $16. Those amounts are included in your total energy charges on your electric bill and do not show up as a line item.

Effective October 1

The facilities charge for single-phase service will increase from the current rate of $8 to $15 per month and the charge for three-phase service from $16 to $25.

In addition to this adjustment, we’ll be moving from a year-round rate to seasonal, summer/winter rates. Overall, for residential members, we’re looking at a 3.1 percent increase from current rates to the new rates, which are outlined on pages 20B-20C of the August edition of South Carolina Living and will go into effect on the same date as the facilities charges.

The delay in implementation is out of consideration for members, the timing of the announcement and the cooling season for our system.

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