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■ currents ask your co-op


Q. A.


What is the OAEC and what do they do for my electric co-op?


The OAEC is the acronym for the Oklahoma Association of Electric Cooperatives. The OAEC


acts as the statewide organization for Oklahoma’s electric cooperatives and cooperative-owned generation and transmission co-ops. Like other statewide groups such as the Cattleman’s Association, Farm Bureau or the Oklahoma Association of Community Action Agencies, the OAEC provides a number of important services. They are there to assist with local employee training programs such as safety training for our linemen. They also keep tabs on a number of legislative issues that affect your co-op at the state capitol, and when we have a severe outage, we can call on them to help us locate mutual aid teams from other co-ops to help get the power back on.


By serving as the central organization for all of Oklahoma’s electric co-ops, the OAEC is also able to provides Choctaw Electric and other co-ops with services such as workman’s compensation insurance, which saves your co-op thousands and thousands of dollars every year.


The OAEC is a cooperative, just like Choctaw Electric, but its members are the individual co-ops. Each co-op appoints a board member to serve on the OAEC board of trustees, and they each have a vote in how the organization is run. The network created by the OAEC provides a way for co-ops as a whole to have a voice in state matters, and its a great way to share ideas and programs that benefit our members.


Do you have a question for your electric co-op? If so, we’d love to hear from you. Please send your questions by mail or email to: Jennifer Boling, Choctaw Electric Cooperative, PO Box 758, Hwy 93 North, Hugo,Oklahoma 74743. Email: jboling@choctawelectric.coop.


Kilowatt Campers Learn Watt’s Up


Local kids enjoy a morning of activities and games at Kilowatt Kid’s Camp in Idabel. The half-day camp for first through third graders was held on July 25 at CEC office in Idabel. For more information on Kilowatt Kid’s Camp, visit www.choctawelectric.coop.


Meter Tampering Steals From All Members


If a neighbor tapped into your water line to enjoy free water at your expense, you’d not be happy about it. It’s the same with your electricity. When co-op members tamper with their meters to receive free electricity, the costs associated with delivering that power becomes the burden of members who pay upfront for what they use.


CEC has experienced 20 incidents of meter tampering this summer. The situations serve as a reminder that meter tampering is hardly a victim-less crime. “Meter tampering is stealing from every member, and it’s incredibly dangerous,”


says Guy Dale, CEC’s safety coordinator. “People who mess with their meters create conditions that can electrocute anyone who comes in contact with that meter.”


As Dale pointed out, most electricity thieves aren’t posting warning signs about their illegal activity. If a serviceman goes out to check that meter, he could be seriously injured,” Dale said.


In Oklahoma, meter tampering is a crime, punishable by fines up toe $1,000, and up to six months of jail time. If you’re tempted to tap into free electricity, don’t do it. If you suspect meter tampering in your area, please report it to CEC immediately at 800-780-6486.


Two Contests For Members Offer Cash Prizes


■ Find the Lucky Lightbulb: Visit the co-op website at www. choctawelectric.coop and find the lucky lightbulb. If you spot it, please email Lois Ann Beason at lbeason@ choctawelectric.coop. You could win $25!


■ Lucky Account Number: Search your newsletter for the lucky account number. If you find the number and it belongs to you, contact CEC by the 10th of the month for a bill credit up to $100.Call, stop by, or email. 800-780-6486, ext 207, email: jboling@choctawelectric.coop.


4 | august 2014


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