TIMES SEPTEMBER • OCTOBER 2018
CLEARING THE RIGHT OF WAY
preventing problems before they occur.
ALSO IN THIS ISSUE 3 • PRESIDENT'S MESSAGE 6 • DIRECTOR'S CORNER 7 • SHARE THE ROAD 9 • CONNECTING WITH YOUR CO-OP 11 • SAFETY REMINDER 13 • ENERGY EFFICIENCY TIPS
ELECTRIC • NATURAL GAS • PROPANE
TIMES THE ENERGY COOPERATIVE 1500 GRANVILLE ROAD NEWARK, OHIO 43058 (800) 255-6815
INSIDE THIS ISSUE 3 • PRESIDENT'S MESSAGE A safety reminder about the dangers of distracted driving.
4 • RIGHT OF WAY CLEARING Preventing problems before they occur.
6 • DIRECTOR'S CORNER Dusty Buckingham shares a view into our Board of Directors.
TODD WARE PRESIDENT & CEO GARY BAKER DIRECTOR OF MARKETING & PUBLIC RELATIONS HEATHER JUZENAS COMMUNICATIONS MANAGER
COOPERATIVE MEMBERS – PLEASE REPORT ANY CHANGE OF EMAIL ADDRESS OR PHONE NUMBER TO US AT (800) 255-6815 OR FEEDBACK@THEENERGYCOOP.COM. THE ENERGY COOPERATIVE TIMES IS THE OFFICIAL PUBLICATION OF THE ENERGY COOPERATIVE. WITH A CIRCULATION OF MORE THAN 63,000, IT IS THE BI-MONTHLY COMMUNICATION LINK BETWEEN THE ENERGY COOPERATIVE BASED IN NEWARK, OHIO, AND ITS MEMBERS.
THE ENERGY COOPERATIVE TIMES
7 • SHARE THE ROAD Take the extra time and share the road this fall.
8 • OPERATION ROUND UP Operation Round Up Foundation awards $30,933 in August.
9 • CONNECTING WITH YOUR CO-OP There isn't one 'right way' to communicate with your co-op.
11 • CHAINSAW SAFETY Follow a few safety rules to ensure safe chainsaw operation.
13 • ENERGY EFFICIENCY Tips for modern families using many devices in their homes.
14 • MESSAGES FROM MEMBER SERVICE Be aware how to spot utility scams.
15 • FEATURED RECIPE CONTEST Member Cindy Mast's winning squash croquettes recipe.
BY TODD WARE, PRESIDENT & CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER
D I S T R AC T E D D R I V I N G
Todd Ware President & Chief Executive Officer
Safety is one of our main priorities. Our safety practice extends beyond the work day and into everything we do. We look out for one another and work to ensure our members stay informed. After seeing an increase in serious car accidents involving power poles, we dove deeper and looked at what the bigger issue likely is: distracted driving.
The problem isn’t just that a power pole is hit or knocked down. The problem isn’t just that a lineman is dispatched to fix the pole, or that potentially hundreds of people are out of power. The root of the problem is the nationwide epidemic of distracted driving, and the hundreds of thousands of lives it affects daily.
DISTRACTED DRIVING IS A PUBLIC HEALTH ISSUE THAT AFFECTS US ALL. THE LATEST NATIONAL SAFETY COUNCIL STATISTICS SHOW MOTOR VEHICLE FATALITIES ARE UP 6 PERCENT FROM 2015, MOST OF WHICH STEM FROM DISTRACTED DRIVING.
JUST DRIVE CHECKLIST
1. Turn off your cell phone. Put it in the glove compartment, your back seat, or trunk. There is no safe way to make a call while driving - not even hands-free. 2. Send and read text messages and emails before you start driving. 3. Know where you are going before you put the car in 'drive'. Put your destination into your GPS so you do not touch it while the car is moving. 4. Social Media can wait. No update, tweet, picture or video is worth a life. 5. Park in a safe area if you must take a call, text or check email. 6. Do not call or text friends or family if you know they are driving.
For more information on distracted driving, visit https:// www.nsc.org/road-safety/safety-topics/distracted-driving.
Distracted driving ranges from using a hand-held cellphone to taking a bite of a burger, and it even extends to the hands-free devices in our vehicles. Eighty percent of drivers mistakenly believe that hands-free devices are safer than hand-held, when more than 30 studies show that hands-free is not risk-free. Each accident caused by distracted driving is 100 percent preventable. From cellphones to dashboard infotainment systems to evolving voice command features — they all pose a threat to our safety. Just one second of your attention is all it takes to change a life forever. It’s time to make the change, not only for your safety, but for the safety of everyone in our communities. Before you start your car, we encourage you to turn off your phone and devices.
Electric pole broken in vehicle crash
SEPTEMBER & OCTOBER • THE ENERGY COOPERATIVE TIMES
RIGHT OF WAY CLEARING
At The Energy Cooperative, we continue to focus on improving reliability to our members. For our electric members, this means we are working hard to avoid power outages. Power outages can occur for several different reasons. Severe weather, traffic accidents, and even squirrels cause issues on our electric lines. The most common cause for power outages, however, are tree limbs meeting our electrical lines. Tree branches falling on power lines disrupts the reliability of your electric service, and creates an extremely dangerous situation for everyone nearby. We canâ€™t prevent storms. We can, however, make sure the area closest to our power lines is free from tree limbs and debris. To accomplish this, our right of way team conducts aggressive tree trimming and clearing along our electric lines to help prevent problems before they occur.
THE ENERGY COOPERATIVE TIMES â€˘ MAY & JUNE 2017 THE ENERGY COOPERATIVE TIMES
Power outages are not only disruptive for you, they can also be disruptive to us. When the power goes out-- we go out. Having an aggressive right of way program saves our members several thousand dollars annually by reducing employee overtime cost for repairs; limiting outage call center costs; avoiding additional vehicle fuel and maintenance costs; and limiting electric line kWh losses that occur during outages. Clearing the right of way involves cutting, mowing and spraying a minimum of 15 feet from all sides of a single phased electric line, and a minimum of 20 feet from a three phased electric line. We may also use selective herbicides to remove unwanted weeds, brush and trees from the right of way. If total vegetation control is needed to keep the lines clear, we use non-selective herbicides. Our team understands applying herbicides requires
before they occur. precision and we utilize buffer zones to avoiding gardens, flowers and other plants that are important to you. Our team implements a preventative maintenance schedule throughout all our right of ways. They also respond regularly to member calls regarding trees on the lines, or other dangerous situations. In addition to their regularly scheduled work, the Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) has caused them a significant amount of concern this year. Our entire system has been devastated by the EAB. There are thousands of dead ash trees along or near our right of way. We are working to remove the dead ash trees by focusing on targeted areas. This very large problem will continue to be a concern until all of the dead ash trees in our right of way are addressed and removed.
The Energy Cooperative's internal team works with an external vendor to keep our right of ways clear from ground to sky. While we work throughout our entire system, preventative maintenance trimming is currently underway in our Jacksontown and Hickman substation areas. You will receive an automated call if we are heading your direction, and we will leave information on your door. Right of way maintenance is vitally important because it is the backbone of reliability for our electric members. Without a well-maintained right of way, our system canâ€™t be reliable. Be assured that our team is working hard to prevent problems before they occur.
SEPTEMBER & OCTOBER â€˘ THE ENERGY COOPERATIVE TIMES
DIRECTOR'S CORNER BY DUSTY BUCKINGHAM, CCD, BL, DISTRICT 7 DIRECTOR
The root word of cooperative is cooperate. Cooperation is a critical component of success for any organization or team. Cooperation allows groups to have greater success than they would achieve as individuals. Members working together by participating in The Energy Cooperative (TEC) Round Up program is a prime example. Our Dusty Buckingham members have donated over three million dollars that has been distributed to local worthy causes, with minimal impact by rounding up their utility bill. Historically and for generations cooperative utilities have been providing services such as electric and natural gas in areas even though it is not highly profitable to do so. The definition of cooperation is to work together for a common goal. At TEC I have witnessed great cooperation between the board, management, and staff over the eight years I have been involved with the organization. I believe the reason for this is simple, we all agreed on the goal. It was clear that TEC's goal was reaching a normal coop equity position of about 40%. During that time we achieved the first step of that goal by reaching a positive equity position. Today TEC members enjoy a position of 12% equity.
THE ENERGY COOPERATIVE TIMES THEENERGYCOOP.COM
The next milestone for the organization is reaching 20% equity. That will allow TEC to meet bank covenants which will allow the board to potentially begin retiring capital credits. To achieve this goal the board and management cut costs and slowly increased rates appropriately to achieve responsible progress for our members. A watchful eye is also kept on our peers, making sure that we continue to keep our rates and service competitive during our financial recovery. The cooperative board must determine new ends. Going forward, what should our role be for our members? As our financial position improves, board members must decide if we should bring new products that improve quality of life and opportunity for our members such as high speed internet or focus on growing our core businesses. Other options could include investing more money in our infrastructure to improve reliability. Yet others may want only minimal work done on the infrastructure to keep rates as low as possible. These decisions are more difficult and often lack clear answers. Together we must find a balance that best serves our members. Your board appreciates your input as we weigh the cost of future opportunities. Regardless of the decisions made by the board the most important thing is that we continue to cooperate. Together we will continue to achieve great things for our members.
(800) 255-6815 JULY & AUGUST 2018 â€˘ THE ENERGY COOPERATIVE TIMES 7
SHARE THE ROAD And keep everyone safe.
It is the time of year when motorist share the road with school buses, construction crews, and utility crews. It’s important for everyone to slow down and pay attention. By exercising a little extra care and caution, everyone can co-exist safely during this busy fall season.
SHARING THE ROAD WITH PEDESTRIANS
Recently released data from the National Safety Council indicates pedestrian fatalities have risen 46% since 2009, with nearly 6,000 people struck and killed in 2016. Pedestrians are the most vulnerable roadway users. A few precautions go a long way toward preventing accidents. • Don't block the crosswalk when stopped at a red light or waiting to make a turn, forcing pedestrians to go around you; this could put them in the path of moving traffic. • In a school zone when flashers are blinking, stop and yield to pedestrians crossing the crosswalk or intersection. • Always stop for a school patrol officer or crossing guard holding up a stop sign. • Take extra care to look out for children in school zones, near playgrounds and parks, and in all residential areas. • Don't honk or rev up your engine to scare a pedestrian, even if you have the right of way. • Never pass a vehicle stopped for pedestrians. • Always use extreme caution to avoid striking pedestrians wherever they may be, no matter who has the right of way.
If the yellow or red lights are flashing and the stop arm is extended, traffic must stop on a two lane road. The area 10 feet around a school bus is the most dangerous for children; stop far enough back to allow them space to safely enter and exit the bus. Be alert; children often are unpredictable, and they tend to ignore hazards and take risks.
SHARING THE ROAD WITH ROADSIDE WORKERS Ohio's Move Over Law is intended to protect the lives of everyone who works on or uses our roadways. The law requires drivers to move over one lane passing by any vehicle with flashing or rotating lights parked on the side of the road. The original law took effect in 1999 to reduce risk to lawenforcement officers and emergency responders. It was expanded in December 2013 to apply to every stationary vehicle with flashing lights, including road construction, maintenance and utility crews. When the gas or power goes out, The Energy Cooperative crews go out. Remember to give them a little extra safety space. There's plenty of room for all. Let's share the road and keep everyone safe. Information provided by the National Safety Council and the Ohio Department of Transportation.
SHARING THE ROAD WITH SCHOOL BUSES School buses make frequent stops to pick up children, and children often cross the street to get onto the bus. It’s important for everyone to slow down and pay attention – especially before and after school. If you're driving behind a bus, allow a greater following distance than if you were driving behind a car. It will give you more time to stop once the yellow lights start flashing. It is illegal in all 50 states to pass a school bus that is stopped to load or unload children. • Never pass a bus from behind – or from either direction if you're on an undivided road – if it is stopped to load or unload children.
SEPTEMBER & OCTOBER• THE ENERGY COOPERATIVE TIMES
OPERATION ROUND UP
MAKES CENTS FOR OUR COMMUNITIES The Operation Round Up Foundation awarded $30,993 to community organizations in August, 2018. August 2018 Grants • Licking County Educational Service Center for Google Chromebooks at Phoenix Central. • Licking County Library for 2 Automated External Defibrillators (AED) • PBJ Connections for office furniture • St. Louisville Police Department for protective gear • Licking County Coalition of Housing toward service van for maintenance personnel • Village of Philo toward rubber mulch for Village Hall playground • United Way of Licking County for technology • New Hope Lutheran Church for back to school fest • Center for Disability Services toward capital campaign • Village of Gratiot toward furnace replacement. Visit our website to learn more about Operation Round Up Grants. You can access the application at http://theenergycoop. com/round-up-application/. Application materials must be received ten days prior to the meeting date for consideration. The next Operation Round Up Foundation Board meeting is planned for October 9, 2018.
IMPORTANT MESSAGES Gas Line Maintenance The Energy Cooperative (TEC) natural gas crews continue to assess any needed maintenance or replacement of main lines, service lines, and the risers leading to your meter. Safety and reliability are TEC’s most important priorities. TEC pipeline inspectors survey the natural gas lines to help ensure they are safe. Over the last several years, TEC has been working hard to replace older main lines, service lines, and certain types of risers. If you have any questions regarding gas line repair or replacement, please call our Member Service Department at (800) 255-6815. Budget Billing Calculator Would you like consistent Electric, Natural Gas or Propane Bills? We all know the strain that the changing of the seasons can have on our pocketbooks due to electric, natural gas or propane statements. With many economic strategists predicting the ongoing volatility in electric, natural gas and propane rates, wouldn’t it be easier to have your energy statements remain the same amount all year long? If you would like to be able to plan your expenses each month and know in advance what your utility statement will be, then
THE ENERGY COOPERATIVE TIMES
budget billing makes sense for your household. The Energy Cooperative offers budget billing which allows your monthly utility costs to remain constant throughout the entire year. You can sign up for budget billing by simply calling our Member Service Department at (800) 255-6815. Please note the following:
The monthly payment on the APP is based on the average of the current month’s bill, plus the previous 11 months bills. Each month, the oldest bill is removed from the computation, and the new current bill is included. As a result, the payment amount will fluctuate slightly from month to month.
The account must be paid in full to qualify. We would prefer that you have 12 months consumption history but will work with you if you do not. The budget accounts may be adjusted during the month of March. At this time your budget amount may be increased or decreased depending on your usage, the weather, and market conditions. Accounts are renewed yearly with budget billing unless you tell us otherwise.
The difference between actual billings and the average billings will be carried in a deferred balance that will accumulate both debit and credit differences for the duration of the APP year (12 consecutive months). You can sign up for APP by simply calling our Member Service Department at (800) 255-6815 during regular business hours. If you are currently on APP, you need not do anything. We will automatically renew your account unless you tell us otherwise. Please note the following qualifications:
• • •
We Also Offer the Average Payment Plan Average Payment Plan (APP) is an enhanced choice to stabilize your monthly electric, natural gas and propane billing throughout the year. While this plan does not offer the equal monthly payments the budget billing offers, this plan significantly moderates the monthly bill variation while avoiding the potential of accumulating a large balance, or credit when the budget is reviewed in March and September.
Each month, the deferred balance is divided by 12, and this one-twelfth amount is added to (or subtracted from) the average payment amount for the next 12 months. Settlement occurs only when participation in the plan is terminated. The APP is not to be used to defer payment of delinquent bills. If you have any questions regarding the Budget Billing Plan or Average Payment Plan please feel free to contact our Member Service Department at (800) 255-6815. (800) 255-6815
CONNECTING WITH YOUR CO-OP
what works best for you?
When it comes to communicating with your cooperative, there isn’t one ‘right way’ to do it. There are many ways to connect with us; find important information you need; or learn more about The Energy Cooperative. You decide which method works best for you.
STOP BY THE OFFICE. Our member service team can answer your questions; discuss your concerns; collect and record bill payments; and provide specific information about your account.
GIVE US A CALL. We have a team ready to address
questions/concerns and get you needed information quickly. Reach our member service team at (800) 255-6815. We also have a dedicated line for electric outages or urgent concerns. For electric emergencies, call (888) 535-5732. To report a natural gas or propane outage/emergency, you can contact our main member service line at (800) 255-6815. We respond to outages and emergencies 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.
VISIT OUR WEBSITE. Theenergycoop.com is a centralized hub communicating with our members. Our website has links to pay your bill, view the current outage map, visit our crisis management center, easily find our contact phone numbers, and much more! You can even use the “Contact Us” link to send a message to member service. If we receive a message from you on our website, someone from our member service team will contact you as soon as possible. UTILIZE SMARTHUB. SmartHub can be accessed by a
desktop computer, mobile phone or tablet device. To access SmartHub on your desktop computer, use the link on our website or type https://theenergycoop.smarthub.coop/Login.html into your internet browser. If you have a mobile phone or tablet, download the SmartHub app for free from the Apple
iTunes App Store or the Android Market. SmartHub allows you to manage all aspects of your Energy Cooperative account. Use SmartHub to check your energy usage; pay your bill (or setup autopay); report outages and service issues; and view the current outage map. You can even check your service status and verify we know about an issue you are experiencing real time.
BE SOCIAL. Are you on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram? So are we! If you do not follow us on social media, we invite you to consider it. We provide updates for outages/ emergencies; share information about Peak Alerts; post photos from member or community events; and provide lots of information about the work we do. Our social media pages are a great way to interact with us. Be aware, however, that employees who manage our social media accounts are not the same people who respond to outages; or have information regarding your specific account. Sending account questions via Facebook isn’t the most efficient way to get your question answered, and it most certainly is not a good way to notify us of an outage. For account specific concerns, we encourage you to avoid using social media. However, please use our social media pages to provide us with feedback, share photos you took of our employees working hard, or to say thank you to the people who took care of your outage/emergency.
THE BOTTOM LINE We connect with our members in many different ways. Even with constant changes in technology, The Energy Cooperative remains a place where you can walk in the front door and talk to one of our employees. You can pick up the phone to call us. Use your mobile device to connect with us digitally. This is your cooperative! Connect with us in the way that is best for you. Be assured that when you do connect with us, we will respond.
6 THE ENERGY COOPERATIVE TIMES • JULY & AUGUST 2018 (800) 255-6815 SEPTEMBER & OCTOBER • THE ENERGY COOPERATIVE TIMES THEENERGYCOOP.COM
VISIT WWW.VOTE.COOP TO FIND YOUR POLLING PLACE AND BE A CO-OP VOTER.
REALLY PARTICIPATE IN THE COOPERATIVE YOU OWN!
JOIN ACRE CO-OP OWNERS FOR POLITICAL ACTION (ACRE-COPA). By joining ACRE-COPA you will support elected officials who will: â€¢ â€¢ â€¢ â€¢ â€¢ â€¢
Keep your energy bills affordable. Help your Cooperative keep energy service reliable. Assist your efforts to use energy more efficiently. Make renewable energy more affordable for you. Help rebuild your Cooperative after a storm. Protect our economy and jobs when making energy laws.
Mail in the form below or sign up on our website @ theenergycoop.com/acre-co-op-owners-for-political-action Questions? Call member service at (800) 255-6815.
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Mail to: The Energy Cooperative
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CHAINSAW SAFETY BY CONNIE HOGUE, DIRECTOR OF HUMAN RESOURCES & SAFETY
It’s hard to believe how quickly the summer months passed by us. With Labor Day behind us now, many are beginning to prepare for the fall and winter months which may include cutting a supply of wood for bonfires, wood-burning fireplaces and stoves. Connie Hogue
Our right of way staff utilize chain saws on a weekly basis and have been trained to safely operate such equipment. So, as we think about our members who may be preparing for their fall and winter wood gathering needs, a few tips to safely operate a chain saw can be a good reminder this time of year.
10 feet away from a fueling area. 4. When fueling a gas-powered chain saw, refrain from smoking. Use a funnel to pour fuel into the chain saw, and never fuel the tool when it is hot.
GENERAL SAFETY TIPS FROM OSHA INCLUDE: • • • • • • • •
The National Safety Council states that data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows that roughly 36,000 people are treated annually in emergency rooms for chain saw-related injuries. So, before starting a chain saw, it’s important to follow a few rules, OSHA states.
Keep the path the chain saw will take clear. Remove any dirt, debris, nails, small tree limbs or pieces of metal before cutting. Use the saw’s chain brake (or shut off the chain saw completely) when carrying it over rough or uneven terrain. Operate the chain saw only when you have secure footing and keep your hands on the handles. Wear necessary personal protective equipment, including hand, foot, leg, eye, face, head and hearing protection. Never wear loose clothing when operating a chain saw. Be aware that branches under tension may spring out quickly when cut. Be careful not to let tree trunks or limbs bind against the saw. Know the saw may kick back, and never saw with the tip. If one is equipped, keep the tip guard in place.
These safety measures are important, and ones our employees practice every day. Keep safety a top priority in your home and everyday tasks will not prevent you from enjoying life to the fullest.
1. First, check the controls, chain tension, and all bolts and handles to be sure that everything is in good working order according to the manufacturer’s instructions. 2. Then, check that the chain is sharp and has enough lubrication. 3. When you’re ready to begin, set the chain saw on the ground – never drop-start it. Turn the tool on at least THEENERGYCOOP.COM
SEPTEMBER & OCTOBER• THE ENERGY COOPERATIVE TIMES
R E L I A B L E P R O P A N E 12
ry ucto ! d o r Int of $1.49 Rate
SUPPORTING OUR COMMUNITY ONE PENNY AT A TIME. As part of our commitment to community, we have three delivery trucks with special themes. The pink and lavender trucks promote cancer awareness. The red, white and blue truck supports local veterans. The Cooperative donates $0.01 for each gallon delivered from these trucks to support cancer and veteran organizations.
FOR EVERY GALLON OF PROPANE WE DELIVER FROM OUR THEME TRUCKS, A PENNY IS DONATED TO CHARITABLE COMMUNITY GROUPS.
THE ENERGY COOPERATIVE TIMES
The following rate schedule is effective beginning July 1, 2018. Residential fixed rates are based on member usage during the 2017-18 season. The price schedule below remains in effect through June 30, 2019.
RESIDENTIAL RATES $1.85 $1.99 $2.09 $2.19 $3.79
600+ Gallons 501- 600 Gallons (+$7.50 monthly fee) 400 - 500 Gallons (+$15.00 monthly fee) 200 - 400 Gallons (+$15.00 monthly fee) 0 -200 Gallons (+$20.00 monthly fee)
ENERGY EFFICIENCY Tips for the Modern Family
BY PAT MCGONAGLE, VICE PRESIDENT & CFO
If you are struck by the amount of screens, remotes, gaming controls, charging stations and cords that have become fixtures in your home, you are not alone. The typical American family is well connected and owns a variety of electronic devices. According to the PEW Research Institute, 95 percent Pat McGonagle of U.S. families have a cell phone and 77 percent of Americans own a smart phone. Nearly 80 percent of adults own a laptop or desktop computer, while approximately half own tablets. Consumer electronics coupled with the growing array of smart home appliances and technology have slowly but steadily changed our homes and lifestyles. The increased reliance on our many devices has new implications for home energy use and efficiency.
USING SMART TECHNOLOGY TO MANAGE ENERGY SAVINGS So how can we save energy when we are using more electronic devices than ever before? The answer may lie with some of those same electronic devices that have become indispensable to modern living. In many cases, energy savings is a touchscreen away as more apps enable you to monitor energy use.
You can also ensure efficiency by purchasing ENERGY STARcertified appliances. Many new appliances include smarttechnology features such as refrigerators that can tell you when maintenance is required or when a door has been left open. New washers, dryers and dishwashers allow you to program when you want the load to start. This means you can program your task for off-peak energy hours––a smart choice if your electric rate is based on time of use.
ENERGY SAVINGS FOR NEW DEVICES Of course there are the time-tested methods of energy efficiency that can be applied to the myriad of household electronic devices and screens. Computers, printers, phones and gaming consoles are notorious “vampire power” users, meaning they drain energy (and money) when not in use. If items can be turned off without disrupting your lifestyle, consider plugging them into a power strip that can be turned on and off or placed on a timer. While modern life involves greater dependence on technology, your best resource for saving energy and money remains your local electric cooperative. Regardless of your level of technical expertise with electronic devices, The Energy Cooperative can provide guidance on energy savings based on your account information and energy use. For more information, contact our member service department at (800) 255-6815.
From the convenience of your mobile device, smart technologies can maximize your ability to manage electricity use across several platforms––controlling your thermostat, appliances, water heater, home electronics and other devices. One of the easiest ways to make an impact on energy efficiency is with a smart thermostat, like Nest models. Using your mobile device, you can view and edit your thermostat schedule and monitor how much energy is used and make adjustments accordingly. For example, program your thermostat for weekday and weekend schedules so you are not wasting energy when no one is home. Check and adjust the program periodically to keep pace with changes in household routines
SEPTEMBER & OCTOBER • THE ENERGY COOPERATIVE TIMES
Messages from Member Service
UTILITY SCAM ALERT
SCAM SAFETY REMINDERS:
During the past few months, cooperatives members in Ohio have been contacted by various utility scammers. Have you been contacted? To report a scam or verify an employee of The Energy Cooperative, call our member service department at (800) 255-6815.
Your cooperative, bank, and other utilities and organizations will never call you and ask for confidential, personal, or financial information over the phone.
Always ensure that the number or email contacting you is the same as the contact information on your bill.
If you believe you’re being scammed, collect as much information about the situation as possible and report it to a member service representative immediately by calling (800) 255-6815.
Our employees wear a company uniform with our official logo. They also wear a personal identification badge with their name, photo, job title, and a verification phone number.
HOW TO SPOT A SCAM •
A call, email, letter, or home visit from an unfamiliar number or person
Asking for personal or any bank account information
Demanding an immediate payment with a threat attached
Only accepting a prepaid debit card as a form of payment
Pressuring you for a quick decision and payment
Informing you of a rebate you should not be receiving
BE AWARE OF COMMON SCAMS SCAM #1: PREPAID DEBIT CARD SCAM: Scammers insist that consumers needs to pay their bill immediately or their electricity will be disconnected. They tell them to purchase a prepaid debit card and call them back, to a specific number, with the verification code.
SCAM #2: FALSE REBATE: Scammers inform consumers that they have a $25 rebate on their monthly cooperative magazine subscription. The scammers say they need consumers’ bank account information to transfer the rebate.
SCAM #3: GOOGLE SCAM A Google Calendar invitation pops up in your inbox. It claims that it is a “Good Calendar” and has the subject line, “Your electric bill is available.”
SCAM #4: TEXT MESSAGE SCAM: Members receive a text message asking for payment before service is disconnected if they do not make immediate payment.
THE ENERGY COOPERATIVE TIMES
Squash Croquettes RECIPE SUBMITTED BY CINDY MAST, DANVILLE, OHIO
2 CUPS FINELY CHOPPED YELLOW SQUASH 1 CUP FINELY CHOPPED ONION 1 EGG, BEATEN 1 TEASPOON SALT 1 TEASPOON PEPPER 1/2 CUP (PLUS ADDITIONAL TABLESPOON) FLOUR
In a large bowl, combine squash, onion, egg, salt and pepper. Mix well. Stir in flour, coating vegetables. In skillet, heat 1/2 inch oil over medium-high heat. Drop batter by tablespoon into oil. Cook on each side until golden brown. Drain on paper towel before serving.
Holiday Recipe Contest If your recipe is chosen to be printed we'll give you a $100 credit to your energy bill! To enter, send us a copy of the recipe, your name, service address and contact information. Email your best holiday recipe to feedback@ theenergycoop.com, subject line: Recipe Contest. You can also submit your recipe on our website @ http://theenergycoop.com/recipe-contest. Questions? Call (800) 255-6815, Extension 1220. If you prefer mailing the recipe, send your recipe to:
The Energy Cooperative Attention Editor P.O. Box 4970 Newark, OH 43058
Recipes should be received by 10/18/18. THEENERGYCOOP.COM
SEPTEMBER & OCTOBER â€¢ THE ENERGY COOPERATIVE TIMES
1500 Granville Road P.O. Box 4970 Newark, Ohio 43058-4970 (800) 255-6815 TheEnergyCoop.com
PRSRT STD U.S. POSTAGE
COLUMBUS, OH PERMIT NO. 608
FOR MEMBERS OF THE ENERGY COOPERATIVE: TO REPORT AN ELECTRIC POWER OUTAGE OR A DOWNED POWER LINE: CALL (888) 535-5732. TO REPORT A NATURAL GAS OR PROPANE OUTAGE OR EMERGENCY: MOVE AWAY FROM THE AREA. CALL (800) 255-6815 FROM A SAFE DISTANCE.
The Energy Cooperative offers
PROPANE options you want!
Contact us today! (800) 255-6815 TheEnergyCoop.com
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Refer a friend and receive a $50 energy bill credit!
If you're a member of The Energy Cooperative and refer a friend to our propane service, you can earn a credit to your bill. Call us at (800) 255-6815 to find out how.