MEC takes action against COVID-19

April 7th, 2020 by Todd Schroeder, CEO/General Manager

As we all deal with the new realities brought on by COVID-19, I want to assure you that your electric cooperative is here to help you. We have always had an Emergency Plan that has served us well in a variety of circumstances, from ice storms to tornadoes to flash floods. In the early stages of this crisis our staff utilized that emergency plan to assist in the creation of a new specialized COVID-19 Action Plan.

The COVID-19 Action Plan addresses our goal of providing reliable electric service to you, while doing all we can to protect the safety of our employees and membership. After you are sufficiently supplied food and water, we know electricity is the number one thing you need. In such uncertain times, maintaining some sense of normalcy as we hunker down in our homes is very important. With that in mind, keeping the power flowing is Job 1 for everyone involved in maintaining the electric cooperative system.

Keeping the power on starts with our generation cooperative, Associated Electric Cooperative. They have taken every precaution to ensure their workforce is healthy and their power plants are functioning as needed. These measures extend to the six transmission cooperatives that wheel electricity across Missouri, parts of Iowa and Oklahoma: including your local electric cooperative. Business may be a bit unusual, but the service remains the same.

We thought you might want to know some of the steps we have taken in order to keep your power flowing. We’ve closed our lobbies to prevent the spread of germs. Currently, office employees are working from home with limited access to the building. We are encouraging members to utilize our phoneline, website chat, Facebook chat, Smarthub app and online services to communicate with us, pay your bill, request service connects or disconnects and general account questions. With today’s technology capabilities, we are able to not only perform our duties remotely, but effectively serve your needs.

Operations will further minimize contact by working in the smallest crews possible on vital jobs. We ask that if you see our linemen to please keep a guarded distance to ensure their safety. New routines are in place for contractors working on our system in order to promote social distancing.

Our management team and board are consistently meeting to fine tune this plan. We are in regular contact with other electric cooperatives in Missouri and the Association of Missouri Electric Cooperatives. In turn, they are working closely with our national association, the state legislature, Governor Parson, the State Emergency Management Agency and other state electric cooperative associations.

So far, plans are functioning well. Everyone is remaining flexible and working hard to adapt to the new normal. We have stood resilient in the past and we will do so now. Nothing brings out the strength of our employees better than a crisis situation. Our focus at Macon Electric Cooperative is doing our part to keep your life as normal as possible through this situation and beyond. The cooperative way of doing business has brought us this far, and the cooperative way will help us through this crisis.

All the best to everyone. Stay healthy, stay home and we will get through this together the cooperative way!

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