Economic Development

We’re dedicated to powering our communities in more ways than one. In addition to providing safe, reliable and affordable power, we’re investing in innovative energy projects and economic development activities that boost regional vitality, and help our members grow and thrive.

We provide a wide array of support for businesses seeking to start, expand, or relocate to the Tar Heel State. These include:

  • Assistance with site and building identification
  • Energy audit services
  • Assistance with market research
  • Flexibility in rate design
  • Power quality services
  • Loan and grant assistance
  • Demographic analysis


USDA Loans and Grants

North Carolina’s electric cooperatives are a national leader in channeling funds from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Rural Economic Development Loan and Grant (REDLG) program to rural North Carolina. These zero-interest loans can be used to assist with various improvements including fire and rescue, police protection, public buildings and community facilities, and other economic development projects.


Education and Workforce Development

Investment in education and workforce development is especially critical for rural communities so they can retain the skilled workforce necessary to attract jobs and economic opportunity. To that end, JOEMC and the rest of North Carolina’s electric cooperatives invest in a number of programs aimed at supporting education and professional development including:

  • Bright Ideas: For the past 25 years, this grant program has helped bring learning to life in local classrooms by providing funding for innovative classroom projects. In 2018, North Carolina’s electric cooperatives awarded a record $675,000 in grants to teachers that supported more than 600 innovative projects. Since the program began in 1994, our state’s co-ops have provided more than $12.2 million to sponsor nearly 11,700 projects benefiting 2.3 million students.
  • Kenan Fellows: The Kenan Fellows Program for Teacher Leadership based at N.C. State University addresses the critical need for high-quality professional development for educators, and is the largest (science, technology, engineering and math) STEM-focused teacher leadership program in North Carolina. Approximately 25-50 outstanding K–12 teachers from across the state are selected annually for this year-long fellowships hosted by business and industry partners that help leadership capacity and promote curricular design bridging STEM at work with STEM at school. North Carolina electric cooperatives have sponsored and hosted six fellows since 2014.


For more information on Jones-Onslow EMC’s economic development initiatives or our commercial and industrial programs, contact Vice President of Energy Services Steve Goodson at 910-353-1940 or e-mail


Economic Development Links