Area Students Selected for 2017 Youth Tour

Four high school juniors—Elizabeth Coleman, Brittany Gardner, Alyssa Powell, and Jessie Tovar—will be heading to our nation’s capital this summer for a visit. They will represent JOEMC at the Rural Electric Youth Tour in Washington, D.C.

From left to right: Elizabeth Coleman, Brittany Gardner, Alyssa Powell, and Jessie Tovar

The week-long visit in June, sponsored by Jones-Onslow and other North Carolina co-ops, lets our future leaders learn more about government and the cooperative-way of doing business.

Students were selected through an essay contest available at public high schools in our area. An independent panel of judges selected the winners.

Elizabeth, who attends Jacksonville High School, is the daughter of Sara and Daniel Coleman. She is a member of the National Honor Society, the orchestra, the crew of the musical, and is the treasurer of the Tri-M Honor Society. In her spare time Elizabeth enjoys playing the cello and spends a lot of time at the library where she is a member of the Teen Advisory Board.

Brittany is the daughter of Nina and William Horton. She attends Jones Senior High School and is a member of the National Honor Society, student government, HOSA, FCCLA, and the Junior ROTC. Brittany also is a member of the varsity girls’ basketball and softball teams and loves volunteering and helping others during her free time.

Alyssa is the daughter of Sonia and Lanny Powell. She attends Richlands High School and is a member of the student government, Skills USA, Beta Club, and Fellowship of Christian Athletes. Alyssa is also a member of the cross country and track teams and enjoys volunteering at the Onslow County Museum and the Semper Fi Fund Kids Camp.

Jessie, who attends Richlands High School, is the daughter of Lorraine and Jesse Tovar. She is a member of the National Honor Society, Battle of the Books, and the Art Club. Jessie says she’s an artist and loves to paint, draw, and create things. She enjoys math, science, puzzles, and loves reading novels.

 

Stay Out of Hot Water: Operate Your Pool or Hot Tub Energy Efficiently

While your swimming pool or hot tub can be a great place to unwind, you may tense up again when you get your power bill. There are a few things you can do to keep bills in check…starting with regular maintenance.

For pools, keep the pump and strainer baskets clean and backwash the filter according to the manufacturer’s recommended specifications. For hot tubs or spas, be sure to change old or dirty filter cartridges.

Take a look at the pool pump and how you operate it. Make sure the pump is properly sized by a pool professional. And remember, it’s more economical to keep the pool clean by manually removing most debris and keeping the chemistry at the right level than by constantly recirculating water. Experts suggest using a timer to operate the pump six hours a day and gradually increase the run time if needed.

Heating can extend the pool season as well so if you do decide to heat your pool, consider an energy efficient heater such as a heat pump water heater or solar pool heater. The cooler you set the temperature, the less energy you use.

To reduce the cost of operating a hot tub or spa, start with an energy efficient model. Make sure your insulated cover is still in good condition and isn’t waterlogged. Adding a floating blanket can decrease the amount of heat lost and for energy efficiency, set the thermostat to 96 degrees Fahrenheit during warm weather and no higher than 102 degrees Fahrenheit when it’s colder.

7 Cooperative Principles: Education, Training and Information

We continue our discussion this month about the cooperative-form of business and the seven cooperative principles.

Each month we’ll highlight one of the seven principles and explain what that means to a member-owned, not-for-profit organization like JOEMC. This month we’ll talk about Autonomy and Independence.

#5 Education, Training and Information
Cooperatives provide education and training for their members, elected representatives, managers and employees so that they can contribute effectively to the development of their cooperatives. They inform the general public, particularly young people and opinion leaders, about the nature and benefits of cooperation.

To learn more about all 7 Cooperative Principles click here.

 

May is Electrical Safety Month

Lights and appliances turn on with the simple flip of a switch and, most of the time, customers don’t think about how electricity reaches the home—that means we are doing our job. Besides making sure your home has all the power it needs, whenever it needs it, we also want to help you use it safely.

INSIDE THE HOME:

  • Electrical outlets should not be overloaded. Too may items plugged into one outlet create serious fire hazard. Too many items plugged into one outlet create a serious fire hazard.
  • If there are children in the house, be sure that all electrical outlets have safety covers. A child sticking any item into an electrical socket can be seriously hurt.
  • When unplugging an appliance, pull by the plug, not the cord.
  • Never remove the ground pin to make a three-prong plug fit a two-prong outlet.
  • Make sure extension cords are properly rated for their intended use, indoor or outdoor, and meet or exceed the power needs of the appliance or tool being used. Never run extension cords under rugs or carpet; cords can overheat and cause a fire.

OUTSIDE THE HOME:

  • Stay away from downed power lines—assume they are “live” and therefore dangerous.
  • Be sure to have underground utility lines located by dialing 811 before you begin your outdoor digging.
  • If your power is out and your emergency situation requires the use of a generator, notify JOEMC and have a qualified licensed electrician connect the generator to your home’s main electrical supply. If a generator is not installed properly, power from the unit can backfeed along power lines and electrocute anyone who comes into contact with them.

Most deaths and injuries associated with electricity could be avoided — address hazards around the home and save lives and reduce injuries.

 

A Record Crowd Attends Annual Meeting

A record crowd of well over 1,200 members braved the stormy weather and attended this year’s annual meeting on Friday, March 31, at the American Legion Building at the Onslow County Fairgrounds.

Free hot dogs and drinks, giveaways, the business meeting and special entertainment by The Gravy Boys highlighted this year’s event.

Attendees were treated to informative and educational displays and a kid’s zone featuring Jack the Clown. Outstanding entertainment was provided by the Northside High School Singers and local bluegrass favorite Carolina Connection. The Camp Lejeune High School Junior ROTC presented the colors before the business meeting.

In addition, door prizes were given away throughout the night with member Dianne Hewitt winning the grand prize, a 2012 Chevrolet Silverado (recently retired from the cooperative’s fleet).

 

SPECIAL PRIZE WINNERS

43 INCH TOSHIBA LED TELEVISION
Elizabeth Mathis

COUPLE MARRIED LEAST AMOUNT OF TIME
Mr. and Mrs. Douglas Carlyle, Jr.

COUPLE MARRIED LONGEST AMOUNT OF TIME
Mr. and Mrs. Harold Lomax

OLDEST FEMALE MEMBER IN ATTENDANCE
Francis Price

OLDEST MALE MEMBER IN ATTENDANCE
Cecil Davis & Joe Klauser

Summer Energy-Saving Tips for Your Home

Don’t let the warm weather of the coming months turn into “summertime blues” when the monthly electric bill arrives. Here are some tips to help keep your electric bill in check…

Adjust the thermostat
Lowering a thermostat in the winter can save as much as $85 a year. During warmer months, raising the thermostat a few degrees can save money, too. Set the temperature between 78-80 degrees Fahrenheit and you could save up to 8 percent on monthly cooling bills. Programmable thermostats make it easy to save by offering pre-programmed settings to regulate a home’s temperature throughout the year.

Be a “fan-atic”
While they don’t replace an air conditioner or heat pump, fans move the air so everyone feels more comfortable. On milder days, fans can save as much as 60 percent in electric bills. Fans cool people, not rooms, so turn them off when you are leaving.

Regular maintenance essential
We recommend that customers have their HVAC systems serviced annually by a certified HVAC technician. HVAC professionals will check the entire system to make sure it is running efficiently. This will help extend the life of the system and save money.

ENERGY STAR equipment
When it’s time to replace that cooling system, we recommend replacing it with an ENERGY STAR qualified model. This could reduce energy costs by as much as 30 percent. HVAC Rebates from JOEMC are also available for qualifying ENERGY STAR models.

From the CEO: Grid Technology

Technology has spurred big changes to the way we communicate, socialize and do business, and now it’s driving changes to the interconnected electric grid and the way we all use electricity.

As your local electric provider, we are excited about that because those changes benefit you, our members. In fact, JOEMC is exploring, researching, and applying technologies that make better use of the grid and serve cooperative members in new ways. Because the impacts of technology on the grid and industry are happening rapidly, we want to help you understand them and what new benefits JOEMC is bringing to you.

Consider solar energy…it’s an emissions-free, renewable resource but it can also be costly and require proper placement. These factors make home solar arrays out-of-reach for many of our members, so many electric cooperatives, including JOEMC, are exploring the possibilities of breaking down the barriers associated with home installations and bringing you an alternative… building community solar farms throughout their service area that bring together hundreds of solar panels and allow members to subscribe to the energy produced by single or multiple panels. By incorporating this solar farm into the energy mix, the cooperatives and their members can participate in the solar energy movement and offset expensive peaks in power usage.

JOEMC implemented another energy-saving technology, Conservation Voltage Reduction (CVR), during 2016. CVR is a power-saving innovation that optimizes voltage during peak demand times and, in the end, saves the co-op money by helping reduce our wholesale power bill– it can also help put downward pressure on future electric rates. CVR uses equipment that has been strategically placed along electric lines from a substation to monitor voltage levels. Specific equipment, called voltage regulators, control the voltage levels at substations. Because voltage no longer has to be kept higher than necessary at these substations, the co-op can reduce demand during peak-use times of the month when electricity is the most expensive.

Other new technologies bringing change include battery storage, smart meters, electric vehicles and the emerging concept of microgrids.

Today, consumers and power providers are working together to generate, deliver, store and use energy in smarter and more efficient ways. As technology changes what’s possible, JOEMC will continue to evaluate trends and incorporate features that will best serve you, while staying true to our purpose: to provide you power at the lowest possible cost and with the highest standard of service.



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