Rate Adjustment Effective April 2024

For the first time since 2018, Osage Valley Electric Cooperative (OVEC) is adjusting their electric rates. In late 2022, our power supplier, Associated Electric Cooperative, Inc. (AECI), informed their transmission and distribution cooperatives of the impending power supply rate increase scheduled for 2023. The article below is that message from David Tudor, CEO/General Manager of AECI, sharing his perspective on the energy environment and what the future holds.

While the majority of electric cooperatives in the State of Missouri increased their rates in 2023 with AECI’s announcement, the OVEC Board of Directors and staff worked to maintain the electric rates for the past year. And although we knew it would only be a matter of time before we were forced to increase rates, we pledged to hold rates steady as long as possible without causing any negative financial implications to the Cooperative.

The price of materials we purchase for day-to-day operations (poles, wire, meters, transformers,etc) have increased substantially due to inflation, rising transportation costs, and supply chain disruptions. None of these items are an extravagance; they are a necessity for our operations.

Although material prices have increased, our largest expense for the Cooperative is wholesale power. And although we strive to keep your electric rates low, even utilizing revenue from our fiber operations, this increase is a cost our Cooperative simply can’t absorb, resulting in the electric rate increase.

You are probably asking “how much will this increase be?” Our service availability fee will increase $4 per month, from $31 to $35. Our residential members will see an increase in kilowatthour rates from $0.08053/kWh to$0.08453/kWh. Billing Demand will increase from $4.60/kW to $5.60/kW. This rate increase equates to an average increase of 9% for our members. You may access all of the rates on our website
at www.osagevalley.com/rates.

This rate increase will be effective April 1, 2024 and will be reflected on your May 1, 2024 bill.

We wish we did not have to make the decision to raise rates, but the current economic environment is driving these circumstances. Please know these new rates will keep your Cooperative in a strong position of providing safe and reliable power. We’ve done our best to ensure we can meet the needs of the Cooperative and we will continue to work hard everyday to ensure the service you are paying for is the best possible value. Thank you for your support.

Jarrod Campbell, General Manager/CEO

by David J. Tudor

As the leader of Associated Elec-tric Cooperative, I work with a team of dedicated employees generating electricity for six trans-mission and 51 distribution coop-eratives, including Osage Valley Electric Cooperative. Our mis-sion, plainly stated, is to provide reliable, affordable and responsibly-generated electricity to those we serve.

Associated is governed by our 12-person board of directors; transmission member-owners who provide strategic guidance and make key decisions as representatives of their membership across the 51 cooperatives in Iowa, Missouri and Oklahoma.

In September, the Associated Electric board of directors made the difficult decision to approve a budget for 2023 with a wholesale power rate increase that will go into effect on April 1, 2023. This decision was not taken lightly and will be Associated’s first rate increase to wholesale power rates since 2017, despite significant costs incurred during historic winter storm Uri in February 2021. During storm Uri, Associated’s 57 cooperatives experienced no rolling blackouts.

Associated’s wholesale power rates are designed to reflect the costs to serve the system and collect revenues in proportion to those costs. With the increase this spring, member rates will still be competitive in the region and nation.

As you have seen in your area and across our country, costs for many things are way up, but none more than fuels and energy-related products and services. Likewise, Associated’s need for a rate increase is due to growing revenue requirements across many categories, but is driven primarily due to higher prices for the fuel and transportation used to generate most of our electricity. Supply and demand determines much of the cost for our fuels, as does inflation, the regulatory environment and energy policies from Washington, DC.

Our pledge to you is that Associated and its employees will continue to do our best to protect the reliable, affordable power you have come to expect. As a cooperative, it’s in our DNA. And it’s our privilege to serve this cooperative system.

David J. Tudor joined Associated Electric Cooperative as chief ex-ecutive offi cer and general man-ager in May 2016, bringing more than 30 years of experience in the energy industry, including electric generation assets, wholesale commodity trading and utility management