Pioneer Electric to Retire $4 million in Capital Credits During Member Appreciation Celebration

Pioneer Electric is a not-for-profit electric cooperative, owned by the members we serve. Our utility operates at cost, allowing us to retire any funds that exceed our operating expenses back to our members as capital credits. The amount returned to members is determined through a four-part retirement process: determination of membership, allocation, evaluation and retirement.

Membership is established by having (or previously having) electrical service through Pioneer Electric. Members (as owners) have stake in the margins of the cooperative. Capital credit amounts are determined based on members’ patronage (electricity used) throughout their years of membership with Pioneer Electric.

As a non-profit electric cooperative, Pioneer allocates its annual operating margins to members receiving service during the year. These margins (revenue in excess of expenses) are based on your patronage and are called capital credits. They are used by your cooperative for operating funds and paid back to its members as the financial condition of the cooperative permits and bylaw provisions are met.

Before funds can be retired, the Pioneer Electric Board of Trustees evaluates the financial strength of the cooperative. The board then determines the total dollar amount of capital credits to retire (if financially viable) back to the members. Pioneer Electric historically uses a “hybrid” method that splits the retirement amount between the current year and the oldest year of patronage on record.  If approved, Pioneer Electric then retires (pays) capital credits back to members in the form of a check.

The Pioneer Electric Board of Trustees has approved the retirement of $4 million is capital credits back to members in 2021 including $1.8 million in Pioneer Electric patronage (usage) from 1999 and 2020 and $2.2 million in generation and transmission capital credits for service used in 2011 and 2020. Members will be able to pick up their capital credit check during Pioneer Electric’s Member Appreciation on Thursday, Dec. 2 at the Grant County Civic Center between 4 p.m. and 9 p.m. Capital credit checks will not be available at Pioneer Electric’s office; any checks not picked up during Member Appreciation will be mailed.