Board Authorizes Over $1 Million Capital Credit Return

In September 2019, the Stearns Electric Association Board of Directors authorized a nearly $1.25 million general retirement of distribution Capital Credits to the membership. As a member-consumer, you may receive cash back in the form of a check in early December.

If you purchased electricity from Stearns Electric during 1997-1999 and/or 2014-2018 you may receive a distribution Capital Credit check. Capital Credit amounts less than $10 are held until additional Capital Credits are retired. Checks can be expected to arrive in the mail during the first two weeks of December. This year’s average Capital Credit check is $53.14.

As a not-for-profit electric cooperative, Stearns Electric is not like other utilities—you, as a member and consumer, own a portion of the business. One benefit of that membership involves the allocation of excess revenue, called margins, in the form of Capital Credits.

Electric co-ops operate at cost, collecting only enough revenue to run and expand the business, unlike investor-owned electric utilities, which are designed to make a profit for shareholders.

Stearns Electric assigns any money collected above the cost of operations to its members in the form of Capital Credits. When the Co-op’s financial position permits, the co-op retires, or pays, a portion of these Capital Credits back to its members.

Allocating and retiring excess revenue to members helps distinguish cooperatives. We’re proud to support our communities by putting money back into the local economy—and into the pockets of those we serve. It makes our business model special.

Capital Credit payments are quantifiable proof that as a member of Stearns Electric, you are an owner of a successful, effective organization. Life to date, we have distributed more than $32 million in Capital Credits to our members.

If you have questions regarding Capital Credits, please contact our Capital Credits Coordinator during regular business hours at (800) 962-0655.

One more way Stearns Electric is adding value to your life.