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We’ve Come A Long Way ■ from the ceo


A


ny business worth its salt knows that planning for the future is a necessary gamble. At Choctaw Electric Cooperative, we invest a lot of money in right of way and technological improvements in order to bring you the level of service you expect today, as well as the services you are likely to require in the future.


After the ice storm of 2000, it became obvious that Choctaw Electric needed a more comprehensive and long term right -of-way maintenance plan. To improve outage response times, reduce line loss and provide for greater efficiency among all aspects of your co-op field operations, major technological upgrades were in order.


In 2007, we kicked off an ambitious five year plan that included additional right of way improvements and a massive overhaul of our computer


CHOCTAW ELECTRIC COOPERATIVE OUR MISSION:


Choctaw Electric Cooperative strives to continually improve customer service and satisfaction by providing members with the highest quality goods and the lowest possible rates, evaluating new technologies and seeking even better methods of delivering these services.


system. This technology upgrade made it possible for your co-op to replace old meters with advanced models that allow for remote connect and disconnects, digital reading, more detailed usage monitoring and outage data, and prepaid metering.


As part of the five year plan, we also replaced worn out poles and old wire, resized lines and transformers, and installed new switch gear for greater dependability. Drastic improvements were made in our system mapping by electronically recording the site of each of our electric poles via GPS, and installing GPS tracking on each of our co-op trucks. This technology allows us to view our system from the office, pinpoint outage locations and service problems, and track the whereabouts of our service vehicles and crews at all times. These upgrades have improved safety for our crews and boosted the efficiency of our field operations.


In the midst of these improvements, we also created a capital credit refund plan that has returned over $5.1 million to members since 2005.


All the progress made under CEC’s strategic plan worked toward a singular goal: To improve our service reliability and lower operating costs. The success of our plan can be measured in over $4 million dollars saved. These operational efficiencies made it possible for CEC to decrease its electric rates by one cent per kilowatt- hour (kwh), effective November 1, 2013.


These sort of outcomes don’t happen without effort, long term planning, and a considerable amount of


investment in an uncertain future.


When 2013 ended with the most devastating ice storm since the storm of 2000, your co-op


strategy faced an


important test—and passed. Winter Storm Cleon knocked out power to 10,000 CEC members. Within four days of the storm’s arrival, power to more than half of the affected members was fully restored. Furthermore, areas of the co-op system that received several cycles of herbicide treatment followed by brush cutting, received considerably less damage.


These are accomplishments to celebrate as we continue to move forward. They are achievements that are plain to see in the financial facts and figures we share with you in this issue. They are the successes built by the hard work of your co-op employees and the wisdom of your board members. Anyone who would find fault with these accomplishments ought to remove their blinders. They’ll see we’ve come a long way— and we aren’t finished yet.


TERRY MATLOCK CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER


inside•your•co-op | 3


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