FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Find the Answer to All of Your Questions in Our Frequently Asked Questions Section Below.
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Grady EMC provides monthly bills to all of our members. This bill includes account information, the account holder’s name and address and the date the bill is due. Also included is a bar graph of usage over the previous 12 months. Any additional meters connected to the account, which would include any yard lights, a detail of the kilowatt hours (kwh) of usage and, if you have net metering, any buyback kwh as well as the cost of those services (reimbursements) would be shown on the bill. The state of Georgia imposes a seven percent tax on your electric service, so your total bill is the charge for the amount of electricity used plus a customer charge, which represents the minimum cost to provide service regardless of electric sales, and the state tax. Payments received after the identified due date are subject to an additional service charge. Accounts that remain unpaid ten days after the due date are subject to disconnection. For any questions or further information regarding your bill please call Grady EMC at 229.377.4182 (select option 2) or e-mail us at email@example.com
Grady EMC has five convenient bill payment options available for our members. Members can pay: In person at our main office: 1499 US Hwy 84 West, Cairo, GA 39828 (drive-thru hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.) Via U.S. Mail at Grady EMC CSR, P.O. Box 270, Cairo, GA 39828 Via telephone by calling 229.377.4182 and choosing option 1 (you will need your account number if paying via phone) Via online bill pay at www.GradyEMC.com Customers can also pay via bank draft. To set up a bank draft payment, please call Grady EMC at 229.377.4182 and choose option 2 and a customer service representative will assist you.
We strive to provide the most competitive rates in the region and the state. Our goal is to provide excellent service through stable rates, high reliability and safe service. Rate schedules are available at the Grady EMC headquarters (1499 US Hwy 84 West, Cairo, GA 39828). Please contact us for more information by calling 229.377.4182, choose option 2 and request member services or by e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Power Cost Adjustment is directly linked to our wholesale cost of power. Since Grady EMC is a private, not-forprofit electric distribution cooperative, we strive to ensure our costs are as low as possible throughout the year while providing safe, reliable service. One way we ensure these costs are low is by passing on savings through our Power Cost Adjustment. This allows the cooperative to incrementally increase or decrease our retail rates with the changes in our wholesale power costs. Some utilities set these rates higher to ensure excess margins throughout the year; however, at Grady EMC we actively manage our power costs and pass on any savings we have through our wholesale power bills to our members. Each month we review our wholesale power bills and calculate our wholesale power costs, which is based upon the average of the previous two months. For more information, please call our Grady EMC offices at 229.377.4182 and request member services or e-mail us at email@example.com.
Grady EMC and other power companies throughout Georgia rely mostly on conventional power stations like coal-fired plants to generate electricity. Across the country and around Georgia however, a growing trend is the use of distributed energy resources to reduce the amount of electricity purchased from utilities. This distributed generation includes many renewable energy generation sources like solar panels on homes and businesses, windmills, biomass converters, even small hydroelectric systems. It is important to properly analyze the costs and maintenance of these sources of electricity and Grady EMC is available to consult with our members to ensure they receive the greatest benefit. Net metering is a service offered by Grady EMC to its members who are using these distributed energy resources. The service allows for the purchase of excess electricity produced by our member’s generators at a rate based upon our distributed generation rates. As part of the net metering process, Grady EMC is proud to partner with our members and provide a way to ensure they receive the maximum benefit from these sources of electricity. Net metering requires the completion of an application as well as engineering approvals to ensure the system is safe for our members and employees. Back feeding may occur if these systems are not properly installed which could cause damage to facilities and injuries to members or employees. For more information, please contact us at 229.377.4182, choose option 2 and request member services or e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please call Grady EMC offices at 229.377.4182, choose option 2 and discuss bill concerns with the representative or email us at email@example.com.
Grady EMC strives to educate our members on ways to reduce their bills. Closely monitoring power usage is the number one way to lower the amount of your bill. Usage escalates during the extreme weather months – cold and hot weather can drive bills higher. Insulation, newer and more efficient heating and cooling systems, energy efficient windows, water heaters and appliances, as well as efficient lighting are some of the ways members can see reductions in their usage, all of which would lower monthly bills. Please call Grady EMC at 229.377.4182 and choose option 2 or e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule an energy audit to identify the best options for lowering electricity usage and the amount of monthly bills.
Please call Grady EMC offices at 229.377.4182 or e-mail us at email@example.com to receive details on the specific type of service you are requesting. New services are subject to credit approval and may require a deposit or startup fee
Please call Grady EMC offices at 229.377.4182 or send us an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org to request a reconnection; we will need details on the specific type of reconnection you are requesting.
New construction or construction modifications to connect service typically take 6-8 weeks. Once you request new construction service from Grady EMC, you will be contacted by a service representative or a construction design engineer to answer any questions and design the service for construction. The design service may require a deposit or aid for construction. Please call us at 229.377.4182 and choose option 2 or e-mail us at email@example.com for more information.
If you are experiencing a power outage please call Grady EMC at 229.377.4182 and choose option 3 or option 2. In addition, you may enter your outage online through the Report an Outage button at www.GradyEMC.com.
Our average response time is approximately 20-30 minutes and our annual availability is 99.98%, among the leaders in the state. Grady EMC also strives to reduce power outages in our service area through line maintenance, upgrades and trimming. When outages occur, we have field personnel on call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. In most cases, we restore power quickly, but there are occasions where additional equipment, material, tools and/or people may be required and this may lengthen the outage time. Also, due to the rural nature of our service area, the terrain can add increased challenges when responding to outages. Despite these obstacles, we are proud to provide a high level of service that is a direct result of the hard work of our men and women who are available regardless of the situation.
Right of way is an area adjacent to roads or in other places where various utilities (power, cable, sewer, water) are installed. Since our mission is to provide safe, reliable and affordable service to our members, we have to maintain our right-of-ways so we can construct and inspect our poles, lines and other facilities. We maintain these areas by inspecting, trimming, mowing, spraying and upgrading or replacing facilities as needed. This maintenance is needed to ensure your service is reliable and safe for our personnel and to reduce costs due to outages. Outages are often caused by fallen trees, branches and limbs, as well as vines and brush contacting our equipment. For more information, please contact us at 229.377.4182, choose option 2 and request member services or e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Blinking occurs due to our service protection approach. The blinking allows any temporary obstruction, like a fallen tree limb, to clear the lines without having a full outage. This type of protection approach ensures electrical lines are not damaged during natural occurrences and members do not see increased outages. For more information, please call our Grady EMC offices at 229.377.4182 and request engineering or e-mail us at email@example.com.
Power outages are a natural part of any electrical system. Due to the rural areas we serve, some areas are more prone to outages. Outages can occur for a number of reasons such as debris, car accidents, equipment failures, or transmission outages. In the case of an outage, remember to check your main breakers and confirm your account is up to date. As always, call Grady EMC offices with any questions at 229.377.4182 or e-mail us firstname.lastname@example.org. If you have an outage, please call 229.377.6060 or visit our website www.GradyEMC.com and click Report Outage.
Please call the Grady EMC offices at 229.377.4182 and choose option 2 or send an e-mail to email@example.com and request an energy audit or meter test. A Grady EMC service member will contact you to schedule your audit or test.
Grady EMC offers yard lights to both residential and commercial customers. Please contact Grady EMC at 229.377.4182 and choose option 2 or e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss the yard lights available to you.
Please call the Grady EMC offices at 229.377.4182 and choose option 2 or email us at email@example.com with the location of the yard light and your account information.
Please check our Careers page at www.GradyEMC.com for a current list of job opportunities.
Grady EMC primarily serves Thomas, Grady and Decatur Counties with nearly 60,000 poles, 20,000 electric meters, 3,300 miles of power lines and more than 13,000 members. Financially, Grady EMC is a not-for-profit entity with total assets over $100 million and nearly $45 million in annual revenue. Total assets include our poles, power generating equipment, buildings, trucks and many other capital investments. Full financial statements can be found in our annual report, which is available at GradyEMC.com under the Member Communications link or just click here.
Grady EMC was created through the Rural Electrification Act (REA) in 1936. This allowed rural areas to establish not-forprofit member cooperatives to provide electrical service in communities that other utilities were unwilling to serve. In Georgia, the Territorial Electric Service Act of 1973 further defined territories for the state’s utility providers. Most residential customers are bound by the Georgia Territorial laws and are required to purchase from their local provider. Providers do compete on certain large loads including manufacturing plants, warehouses, or schools. In these cases, there is a bidding process and multiple utilities can compete to supply the load. Fortunately, Georgia offers rates below the national average and Grady EMC offers some of the lower rates in the state.
Grady EMC is governed by a seven member Board of Directors representing specific areas of our service territory. For more information please visit our website at www.GradyEMC.com and select About Grady EMC/Board of Directors.
Grady EMC’s board is selected by a vote of its members present at the Annual Business Meeting held on the third Friday in October. Grady EMC board members reside within the districts in which they serve and are considered leaders in their community.
Prior to the annual meeting, our quarterly newsletter provides information regarding the Board of Directors. This publication includes names of the nominating committee as well as information regarding nomination by petition; however, the member being considered must have established primary residence within the district up for election. For more information, refer to our Annual Report or call us at 229.377.4182, choose option 2 and ask for member services.
Grady EMC is governed by a seven member board, which meets on the first Wednesday of every month. The board asks that individuals who desire a meeting submit a written request by U.S. mail or via e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. Typically, individuals who request a meeting will first meet with the president and general manager of Grady EMC before being added to the monthly agenda.
Solar power is the conversion of sunlight into electricity through either photovoltaics or concentrated solar power. Solar power is a growing electricity source across the world and is becoming more viable as technology improves. Renewable power includes solar power and is the production of electricity via a renewable resource as opposed to non-renewable fossil fuels. Grady EMC purchases renewable electricity through our membership in Green Power EMC which means it is included in our wholesale electricity supply. In addition, Grady EMC has a solar test facility on-site at its headquarters. Our members receive the benefits of Green Power through our relationships with both Green Power EMC and our solar interconnections by reducing our demands from other sources of electricity
Grady EMC is proud to partner with our members regarding solar and other forms of distributed generation. Although we do not currently offer products or installation services, we are available to consult with members regarding these projects. For more information please contact us by calling 229.377.4182, choose option 2 and request member services or e-mail us at email@example.com.
Grady EMC is always looking into potential areas of growth but at this time has no plans to provide retail broadband services.
Grady EMC does not sell generators or appliances but does offer rebates for customer’s conversion to more energy efficient appliances. Our staff is available for appliance and generator consultations. Please contact Grady EMC at 229.377.4182 or via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Grady EMC provides an annual report to all members prior to the annual meeting. This report includes a consolidated summary of the financial statements. In addition, we provide detailed financial statements on our website at www.GradyEMC.com. You can also contact Grady EMC at 229.377.4182, choose option 2 and request member services to receive a copy of the report.
Grady EMC and all not-for-profit organizations are required to file an annual tax return known as Form 990. This form includes all financial information regarding the cooperative for that tax year including director and officer compensation. The board and an independent auditor review our Form 990 each year for discrepancies or disparities. If you have any questions regarding this or any other related financial information, please contact us at 229.377.4182 or by e-mail at email@example.com.
The Grady EMC Board of Directors determines executive compensation each year. Leaders at Grady EMC are reviewed annually, and their compensation is based on an analysis of other EMCs and organizations of similar size and type.
In the electric cooperative business model, member equity – also known as patronage capital – is the value of members’ investment in the EMC. It is not simply dollars in a bank account. Patronage capital is accumulated this way: in years when Grady EMC takes in more money than it costs to provide electricity to its members, the remaining funds are credited as patronage capital to its members. In a member-owned cooperative, this member equity is used to invest in the physical assets of Grady EMC, including generation facilities, poles, transformers, power lines, trucks, and the like which are necessary to enable Grady EMC to provide electric service. Member equity is also used to establish reasonable reserves, to fund future capital needs, and to maintain a reasonable capital structure. This often reduces the need to borrow money to run the business, saving us interest and expense, and helping keep down rates. The benefit to members is not just when patronage capital is paid, but also by receiving the benefit of reliable service at lower costs. Unlike investor owned utilities or a city utility, our members receive the same benefits of affordable and reliable service in addition to a benefit that is payable when, in the Board’s judgment, Grady EMC’s financial condition permits patronage capital distributions. Currently, on a monthly basis, the Grady EMC Board of Directors approves the payment of patronage capital to member estates upon application.
Please contact Grady EMC offices by phone at 229.377.4182 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org to receive an application as well as additional information regarding patronage capital retirements.
Electric cooperatives were founded to provide electrical service to members in rural areas. Each cooperative’s Board of Directors and leadership determines how its patronage capital is refunded. There are a number ways this is handled including no refunds, refunds to estates only, general retirements on a rotating basis and others. One of the most common processes among Georgia EMCs is to refunding patronage capital to member estates.
SOWEGA Power and Baconton Power are two gas fired combustion turbine peaking power plants located in Baconton, Georgia, which were built for the benefit of Grady EMC members. These plants are our largest system load and provide Grady EMC with stable future power as well as a source of energy when demand is high. The power plants not only supplement Grady EMC members via electricity distribution sales but also provide us with a valuable long-term asset that few other cooperatives have the benefit of owning. If you have any further questions please contact us at 229.377.4182 or through e-mail at email@example.com.
Grady Holding Corporation was created to provide the best organizational structure for the SOWEGA and Baconton Power plant projects. Sugarcane Property is the LLC formed for the purchase of real-estate located approximately 1 mile north of our headquarters for future developments (power generation, expansion, staging, etc.). It was purchased because of its strategic location adjacent to high voltage transmission lines as well as one of Grady EMC’s largest distribution substations. Details on these and other affiliated organizations are disclosed in our annual audit as well as our annual report.
Originally built in the 1950’s, Grady EMC’s headquarters had not been significantly updated in more than 60 years. The roof had severely deteriorated, we had outgrown the office space and the building had outdated electrical, plumbing, heating, air conditioning and telecommunications systems. In 2009, the Board of Directors made a decision to renovate the building. Our approach allowed us to utilize our own employees’ skills throughout the renovation — from demolition, to wiring, masonry, cabinetry, framing, etc. This approach saved significant ratepayer dollars. We are proud of the finished product and believe it will continue to provide our employees a safe and reliable headquarters to ensure the highest level of service for our members.
Levelized billing is a rolling 12-month average of your electric bills which reduces the dramatic swings in billing due to extreme weather during the summer and winter and provides a more stable and level bill amount. Levelized billing does require good payment history and at least 12 months connected to qualify. To find out more about this new billing option please contact us at 229.377.4182 option 2 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Grady EMC receives energy from numerous sources across the state – nuclear, natural gas, coal, hydroelectric, solar, and others to name a few. Recently, we partnered with Green Power EMC on a new 2 MW solar generating facility in Grady County, on property we own, after considering several options regarding renewable energy. This new resource will provide our members with an additional renewable energy source and our community with this, first of its kind project, which will benefit our members over the course of its 25 year power purchase agreement through clean power production and competitive rates. We are excited to see the future of renewable energy and will continue to research, review, and invest in the future of energy production and distribution to benefit our members. For more information please call 229.377.4182option 2 and ask for member services or email us at email@example.com.