CURRENT TIMES News for members of White River Valley Electric Cooperative
We’re all in this together
Bringing light in times of trouble
peration Round Up is an innovative Cooperative Board of Directors appoints the
program designed to collect and Trust Board members.
distribute money to local charities, The money raised by Operation Round
food banks, scholarship programs Up helps with food, clothing, medicine and
and families with basic human needs. fire victims. Donations are also made to
Implemented by White River Valley Electric community services like rescue squads
Cooperative in February 1993 for the five- and ambulance districts. A portion of the
county service territory of Christian, Douglas, funds are also used for scholarships in the
Ozark, Stone and Taney, ORU is a vital five-county area. 100% of the member’s
program today. donations are given back to the community.
How does it work? If a member None of the money is used to pay electric bills
participates in Operation Round Up, the owed to WRVEC or to finance the operations Members of the Trust Board are (l to r): Jan
electric bill will be “rounded up” to the next of the cooperative. Kirsch, President (retiring); Larry Rowland
highest dollar each month with those extra The White River Valley Electric Trust (retiring), Lyle Rowland (incoming), Larry
few cents going to the Operation Round Up adds to Operation Round Up contributions Price, Doug Hayter, Joyce Baker, Jim Haden,
fund. For example, if a month’s bill is $52.71, by raising money from additional sources Mark Kirby, Treasurer; Glen McNabb,
the member will pay $53.00 with the 29 cents such as the annual Pro-Am golf tournament, Secretary; Cindy Rains, WRVEC; not pictured:
going directly to the fund. The donation for the annual Branson After Hours event and Gaylene Rippee, Vice-Chairman; Gale Wooten
any month may be as little as a penny or as the Hooked on Education annual fishing and Anne Coleman (incoming).
much as 99 cents. The average donation will tournament.
be just over $6 a year (or
50 cents a month).
Contributions to Operation Round Up
are tax deductible. Participating members
The White River Valley receive a summary of contributions on the
Electric Trust Board, January bill. peace and
made up of ten volunteer Application forms for those needing
community leaders from
the five-county area, evaluates
assistance in times of trouble can be found
at www.whiteriver.org. Members who would
and awards requests for like to learn more about the program and
assistance from Operation its importance to the cooperative and the surround
Round Up in accordance surrounding communities can contact Cindy
with the Trust’s bylaws.
The White River Valley Electric
Rains at 417/335-9335 or crains@whiteriver.
Cold Weather Rule in Effect throughout
lthough the Public Service Missouri Public Commission will be
A Commission (PSC) does not
regulate White River Valley
Electric Cooperative, WRVEC’s electric
handled on a case by case basis. WRVEC
may require a member (consumers)
to provide documentation supporting
service policy will follow the same their claim of low-income elderly and/or
guidelines as outlined by the Missouri disabled.
Public Service Commissions cold weather for a healthy
rule, as it relates to temperature only. The Cold Weather Rule went into
Low-income elderly and disabled effect November 1 and will remain active and happy
members (consumers) as defined by the through March 31.
2449 State HWY 76 E
PO Box 969
Branson, MO 65615
Ava Gainesville Ozark Stone County
(417) 683-4134 (417) 679-4916 (417) 485-6012 (417) 272-0181
Important issues to understand
Explaining Capital Credits
ately, I have been receiving a lot lines in case of emergency such as a large
of phone calls from our members ice storm.
regarding capital credit issues. Working capital also serves to reduce
Because these issues are important to debt requirements for investment made
understand, I would like to take this in the cooperative's electric distribution
opportunity to explain capital credits and system. This helps the cooperative
what they mean to you, our members. minimize the amount of high interest
Unlike other utilities, rural electric money it must borrow, which in turn
cooperatives are owned by those they lowers your cost for service through the
“Capital credit serve. We exist not to earn a profit, but to stabilization of rates and builds your
allocations are pooled provide our member-owners with reliable member equity in the co-op.
together and used as and safe electric service at cost. In other Capital credits are “retired” or returned
working capital so our
cooperative can continue words, we are governed by our members to the membership at the discretion of
to serve our members for our members to fulfill this purpose. the Board of Directors according to our
with reliable power.” Income in excess of operating revenues bylaws. The Board has carefully examined
(referred to as the "margin") is determined the financial strength of the cooperative
-Chris Hamon each year, and this excess income is in light of current economic conditions
CEO allocated to the members in the form of and will continue to monitor the financial
capital credits. Allocations are made to stability of the cooperative as it prepares
members in proportion to their purchase its plans to retire allocated capital credits
of electricity during the year. in the near future.
Capital credit allocations are pooled For more information about capital
together and used as working capital so credits, please visit our website at www.
our cooperative can continue to serve whiteriver.org. If you have questions
our members with reliable power. This regarding your capital credit check,
working capital keeps the cooperative please contact the Billing Information
financially sound, and these funds pay Department at 417-335-9300 or 1-800-
for, among other things, expensive system 477-6408. We will also provide updates
improvements, building power lines and about capital credits through the Current
substations, and repairing systems and Times.
Celebrating National Cooperative Month Thanks to all our members
Proud to be member-owned who have participated in
the Our Energy, Our Future
n celebration of National Cooperative
Month, White River Valley Electric Your efforts to fight for
Cooperative held a member appreciation climate change legislation
day at each one of the cooperative’s ﬁve
ofﬁces. Cooperative members were served hot
that is fair, affordable and
dogs, chips, soda and cookies. achievable have been
At White River Valley Electric
Cooperative we get our power from our over
49,000 meters in Taney, Christian, Ozark,
Stone and Douglas counties. Today, member-
owned nonproﬁt electric cooperatives operate Members at the Ozark ofﬁce
in all but three states. In Missouri, 47 electric enjoy lunch during Member $50 in FREE electricity
Appreciation Day. goes to...
cooperatives serve more than 500,000 rural
Missourians. Bill Opie
Energy-$aving Tip of the Month Charles Eldon & Rosalie Thomas
Christmas lights don’t have to be a burden on your budget. Consider switching Reeds Spring
to energy-efficient LED decorations, now available wherever holiday lighting is David Pickens
sold. Christmas lights bring a lot of joy, but they also require care. Be sure not Protem
to overload circuits, and for those outside decorations, use only GFCI-protected These names were drawn from postcards
outlets and cords that are rated for outdoor use. sent in from the September Current Times.
Accountability Commitment to Community Innovation Integrity
Does 401(k) saving
still make sense?
lenty of Americans have experienced heartache
watching their 401(k) balances slide dramatically
in the past year. Stung by the market, and perhaps
facing a tighter budget at home, you may be, like many
others, uneasy about continuing to invest in your 401(k).
However painful your recent losses may have been,
though, 401(k) investing still does make sense. It fact, it may
be more important than ever. Here are three good reasons.
The power of buying low
Your 401(k) account isn’t the place to time the market—
that’s not what long-term investing is about. But neither
does it make sense to invest only when stock prices are high.
Now, while prices are relatively low, you have the ability to
replenish your account with larger numbers of shares at
“bargain” prices. That is, a contribution of $200 today may
buy more shares in a given fund than it did in 2007.
Bottom line: As the market recovers, your account’s
value is more likely to recover, too, if you continue to invest
The 401(k) advantage
One of the biggest upsides to 401(k) investing hasn’t
changed: by contributing pre-tax dollars, you cut your
income tax liability. For instance, let’s say you’re in the 25%
tax bracket. If you contribute $100, Uncle Sam is essentially
putting $25 into your 401(k) while your take-home pay is
reduced by only $75.
If your employer offers matching contributions, that’s
even more free money on the table. If you contribute 3%
of your pay and your employer chips in 3%, you’re already
getting a 100% return on your investment.
Bottom line: Don’t miss out on one of the most cost-
effective savings vehicles around.
Personal savings are becoming more important, not less
While some Americans still have traditional pensions and
many are counting on Social Security benefits, a growing
number can expect to rely heavily on personal retirement
accounts such as 401(k)s and IRAs for retirement income.
Skimping on contributions today means you lose out on
the ability of your money to compound—market dips
notwithstanding—over the long term.
Bottom line: However frustrating your past losses, you
still want to continue building your nest egg for the future.
One golden rule
What can you do to give your 401(k) the best chance
of meeting your financial needs? Make sure your account
is appropriately allocated among asset classes. That
means having a sensible mix of equities, bonds and cash
for your time horizon, your risk tolerance and your goals.
Review your allocation periodically over time and adjust it,
according to your long-term strategy, as needed.
If you need help deciding on your investment mix,
you may want to consult a trusted financial advisor—a
registered professional who does not receive commissions
on products they discuss.
Lisa Hughes-Daniel is a marketing communications consultant
who writes and edits employee benefits-related materials for the
Insurance & Financial Services Department of the National Rural
Electric Cooperative Association.
White River Valley Electric
Co-op Plan for
Cooperative ofﬁces will be
closed on December 24th
and 25th to celebrate the We respond as quickly as possible to all outage calls. During major
Christmas holiday. As power outages, it can take some time to restore power to all of our
members. Accurately reporting outages and your patience will allow
always, our crews will be us to keep outage times to a minimum.
on call to assist with any
To report an outage call
417-335-9333 or 800-695-0056
CURRENT TIMES News for members of White River Valley Electric Cooperative
To get the best deal, consider more than the price
Shopping for appliances
Please bring me an energy efficient dishwasher...
ired of those avocado green and harvest conditioners. Brian Coleman at 417-335-9338 or go to
gold kitchen appliances from the 1970s Here are a few teasers to pique your www.whiteriver.org.
that still grace your kitchen? This interest:
Christmas and New Year’s, there are lots of *Compared to pre-1993 refrigerators, new
reasons to make a change besides updating to ones cost half as much to operate — 75 per
the 21st Century. cent less for that avocado green model.
You also may be eligible for stimulus bill *New dishwashers use about one-third
rebates from the state in late 2009 or early less water and electricity.
2010 on Energy Star appliances. Watch for *New clothes washers use about half the
announcements from the state. water and one-third the electricity of older
Energy Star-qualified appliances are the models — at an average 400 loads of laundry
way to go. They may cost a bit more to buy a year, the savings add up.
but, depending on the appliance, can be up to *If every room air conditioner in the
50 percent more energy efficient. country was an Energy Star model, it would
The appliance product section of www. prevent 1.3 billion pounds of emissions or
energystar.gov shows qualifying models of the equivalent of removing 115,000 cars from
refrigerators, freezers and dishwashers, as the road.
well as room air cleaners, dehumidifiers, To find out what appliance rebates White
clothes washers and dryers and room air River Valley Electric Cooperative offers call
Be energy smart on your next appliance buy
ere’s some smart advice on appliance 4,500-5,500, 40-gallon water heater.
shopping: 3. Select the right size and style.
1. Consider more than the Measure the space the appliance will
purchase price. occupy before you buy. Will doors and lids
If you haven’t shopped for appliances in a open fully? Is there enough clearance for
while, it may be tempting to go for the lowest ventilation?
price, particularly in these lean times. But 4. Know where to shop.
buying the cheapest refrigerator may cost Online, outlets, catalogs, electronics
you more in the long run because the cheaper stores, big box stores, etc.
model may cost twice as much to operate and 5. Compare the performance of the
may require more repairs. Always consider models you’re considering.
these costs before you buy. Repair history, water use, energy
To figure out how much you’ll spend over efficiency, noise level, etc.
the appliance’s lifetime, look at initial cost 6. Ask about special energy-efficiency
— think of it as the down payment — then, offers through the dealer, local store, your
repair and operation costs. The Federal Trade cooperative or even the government.
Commission and U.S. Department of Energy A sales tax holiday may be the day
offer this example. You’re looking for to buy once you’ve done your homework. For
a new fridge. In studying the yellow-and- instance, Missouri’s sales tax holiday will be
black EnergyGuide labels on the back of the April 19-25, 2010.
models, you discover that different 7. Finally, check out the U.S. Department
models with the same capacity vary from a of Energy’s appliance shopping guide at
low of 600 kilowatt-hours (kWh) a year to a those qualifications. You also can use this www.eere.energy. gov under Consumer
high of more than 800 kWh a year to run. In formula from the U.S. Department of Energy Tips.
dollars, that’s about $42 to $56 a year. That for estimating energy consumption of
may not sound like much, but the difference appliances:
adds up year after year for the 10- to 20-year (Wattage x Hours Used Per Day ÷
life cycle of the refrigerator. Increasing 1,000 = Daily Kilowatt-hour (kWh)
energy costs make efficiency an even smarter
The wattage (1 kW = 1,000 watts) of most Is your home as energy
2. Compare the energy use of competing
appliances is stamped on the bottom or back
of the appliance or on its nameplate. Typical
A model’s motor, compressor, pump, valve,
gaskets, seals and electronic sensors all
wattages for common appliances are: as it could be?
350-500, clothes washer
contribute to its efficiency. You can calculate 1,800-5,000, clothes dryer Check out the energy
the electrical use of appliances at www. 1,200-2,400, dishwasher calculator at
energysavers.gov or use the energy estimates 785, dehumidifier www.whiteriver.org
on the EnergyGuide labels. These labels also 750-1,100, microwave oven to maximize your energy
show capacity, energy-efficiency ratings 725, 16 cubic-feet, frost-free refrigerator
and the Energy Star logo if the model meets savings.