June 4, 2020

Governor Extends Moratorium on Disconnection of Utility Services for Non-Payment

On Saturday, May 30, 2020, Governor Cooper issued Executive Order 142 which extended the moratorium on utility disconnections for non-payment for an additional 60 days (thru the end of July 2020).

We fully supports the governor’s decision as many people in our community are continuing to face uncertain financial futures. We do encourage members to continue to pay on their electric bills as they can so large balances won’t build up. PLEASE REMEMBER, members will still be responsible for paying their electric bills for usage during the pandemic. These accrued charges will be able to be paid back over time. Below, we’ve outlined our process in helping members with these bills.    

In addition, we encourage those members who are experiencing financial difficulties to contact JOEMC, so we can work together to find a solution that can help avoid the long-term accumulating of an account balance. The cooperative will continue to take proactive action to support members, communities and local organizations in response to impacts from the coronavirus.


 

May 04, 2020

6 Ways You Can do to Avoid COVID-19 Scams

Scammers are trying to take advantage of the misinformation and fear surrounding the coronavirus to steal your personal information and money. They may try to reach you in different ways — anything from phone calls and emails to fake charities and unauthorized vaccines. Follow these tips to protect yourself and your wallet from scammers.

Don’t click on links from unknown senders
Though many legitimate coronavirus emails and text messages are heading for your inbox, cybercriminals are also sending messages to try to gain access to your personal information. If something seems off about an email, don’t click on any links and delete it.

Ignore robocalls
Scammers may also try to contact you via phone. If you receive a phone call from an unknown or suspicious number, ignore it or hang up immediately. Don’t press any numbers or offer any personal information to the caller.

Disregard offers for home testing kits and vaccinations
You may have seen online advertisements and offers for home testing kits or vaccinations to cure COVID-19, but these are just another scam. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) hasn’t authorized any home testing kits, and many of these products aren’t proven to treat or prevent the virus.

Don’t ‘sign up’ to receive a relief check
The federal government has the information it needs to send you your relief check if you filed taxes for 2018 and/or 2019. Anyone asking for your personal information to help you “sign up” to receive your check is a scammer, according to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).

Research online sellers before making a purchase
Some scammers are posing as online sellers with access to in-demand items, such as cleaning products and medical supplies. If you need any of these products, use a trusted delivery service or order directly from a store.

Don’t rush into making a donation
Before donating to a charity or supporting a cause on a crowdfunding site, research the organizer and the cause. If you see any red flags, consider donating to a different charity. The FTC offers more tips to avoid charity scams.

To keep yourself and others safe, be on the lookout for misinformation. Many people — often, not intentionally — are sharing information that isn’t backed by research or hasn’t been verified by qualified experts. To get the most up-to-date information, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and World Health Organization (WHO) websites.


 

April 22, 2020

6 Ways to Make Your Home Office Energy Efficient

Working from home, even on a temporary basis, may increase your energy use. It means that you’re spending more time using a computer, lights, and other appliances at home instead of in your workplace. But by improving the energy efficiency of your home office equipment, you can save on energy costs without hampering your productivity.

  1. Make sure computers and other office equipment are turned off when they’re not in use for an extended period.
  2. Many electronic devices continue to use standby power even after they’re turned off. Connect your office equipment to an advanced power strip, which will automatically shut off power to unused devices.
  3. Set office equipment, such as printers and scanners, to automatically switch to sleep mode when not in use. In addition to saving energy, the equipment will stay cooler, which will help to extend its useful life.
  4. Use a laptop computer instead of a desktop. Laptops use less than one-third the energy of a typical desktop computer.
  5. Adjust the thermostat to the unoccupied setting. This avoids wasting energy by conditioning the entire house while you’re occupying only a small portion of it. Consider using a ceiling fan to maintain comfort. You can reverse its direction to clockwise in winter, which pushes warm air down.
  6. Use task lighting with energy-efficient lamps. A desk lamp uses less energy than whole-room lighting.

When purchasing new office equipment, make sure it’s ENERGY STAR® qualified. ENERGY STAR-certified products use less energy than standard models. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, if every home office product purchased in the U.S. were ENERGY STAR qualified, Americans would save an estimated $75 million a year in energy costs.


 

April 4, 2020

As families and businesses transition to remote-work and the recent Stay-at-Home order from Governor Cooper, they may see a surge in home energy use – and in upcoming electric bills. Simple money-saving steps can help lower monthly electric bills without jeopardizing safety or comfort.

“We understand the increased financial hardships facing families and businesses due to the economic impact of COVID-19,” said Jeff Clark, Jones-Onslow’s CEO. “While the co-op has suspended disconnections for non-payment and waiving late fees, members will still be responsible for those bills when the pandemic has passed. It’s important for families to be mindful of their energy use and consider adjusting certain habits to avoid higher costs later on.”

Recommended energy-saving tips include:

  • Program your thermostat to maximize energy savings. Setting your thermostat one degree lower when heating or one degree higher when cooling can reduce energy use by up to 5 percent.
  • Do full loads of laundry and wash with cold water. Using warm water instead of hot can cut a load’s energy use in half, and using cold water will save even more.
  • Air-dry dishes.  This step can cut your dishwasher’s energy use by up to 50 percent.
  • Substitute LEDs for conventional light bulbs. Lighting can amount to up to 12% of monthly energy use. LED bulbs can cut lighting costs by 75%.
  • Unplug appliances and electronics when not in use. Small appliances and electronics use energy even when not in use. When powered on, game consoles, televisions and similar electronics are responsible for up to 12 percent of energy use.

For more information on energy-saving tips visit this link from Touchstone Energy.


 

April 2, 2020

One of the best things about being a member of an electric cooperative, like Jones-Onslow, is the annual return of capital credits. With all the uncertainty swirling around us today, your co-op is glad that we’ll be returning capital credit refunds during the month of April to 36,000 accounts totaling over $710,000. If you have an active account with JOEMC, your refund will be seen as CAPITAL CREDIT REFUND on your electric bill.

If you didn’t sign and return the GREEN CAPITAL CREDITS REFUND LETTER we mailed to you back in February, do it today! Then, you’ll be eligible for your capital credits refund next month.

To read more about capital credits click here.


 

April 1, 2020

From the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, JOEMC suspended the disconnection of electric service and late fees for cooperative members in an effort to ease financial hardships during these unprecedented times. We fully support Executive Order 124 that Governor Roy Cooper issued making this a requirement for all electric and gas utilities during the next 60 days. To read the governor’s executive order, go to https://bit.ly/2UA75uB.

We hope this helps co-op members in the coming weeks. In addition, we encourage those members who are experiencing financial difficulties to contact JOEMC, so we can work together to find a solution that can help avoid the long-term accumulating of an account balance. The cooperative will continue to take proactive action to support members, communities and local organizations in response to impacts from the coronavirus.

For more information, call the office at (910) 353-1940 or email us at joemc@joemc.com.


 

March 30, 2020

With Governor Cooper’s recent Stay at Home Request (effective at 5pm today) lasting until the end of April, we understand that this will continue to financially impact our cooperative members. JOEMC previously announced that there would be no disconnection of electric service for non-payment or late fees charges to accounts until April 15. The cooperative would like to announce today that WE HAVE NOW EXTENDED THIS POLICY THROUGH THE END OF MAY. PLEASE REMEMBER AND BE AWARE…ELECTRIC BILLS ARE NOT BEING WAIVED…the co-op is simply allowing members additional time to pay their bills without the account being disconnected or being charged late fees. We want to continue to help folks weather this “storm” and hopefully relieve some stress associated by knowing your electric service will remain active during this time.


 

March 27, 2020

With due regard to the safety and health of our employees, members, and the community, Jones-Onslow’s Board of Directors, at the March 24 scheduled board meeting, made the difficult decision to cancel this year’s Annual Meeting of Members.

Last month it was announced that the March 27 annual meeting would be postponed. The directors reviewed the latest recommendations from federal and state agencies and, in the best interest of everyone involved, made the determination to cancel this year’s event.

“The board considered the risk to our employees and members,” said Chairman John Pierce, “and decided it was best to err on the side of caution and follow the guidelines for social distancing as well as the recommendation of limiting large gatherings. We hope the precautions we’ve taken will help our community in the coming weeks.”

“We look forward to the 2021 annual meeting,” Pierce continued. “Folks that attend the meeting have a great time and it’s truly a wonderful event that lets us bring our members and community together.”


 

March 17, 2020

To take all available precautions, and ensure the health and well-being of our employees and cooperative members, JOEMC’s Offices are closed to walk-in traffic until further notice. Our drive-thru windows will remain open and employees will continue to be available to meet the needs of our members over the phone and via email. We encourage all members to conduct JOEMC business over the phone, via our website, at our kiosks, or through email, if possible. Please call (910) 353-1940 or email us at joemc@joemc.com with any questions.


 

March 19, 2020

JOEMC has activated its Business Continuity Plan and will continue to examine our daily operations to ensure the safety of employees and members. As your local energy provider, we are determined to continue delivering the reliable power that you have become accustomed to while helping protect the health and well-being of our community.

In response to growing concerns surrounding the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19), we have taken the following proactive steps in the way we conduct daily business:

  • On March 12, we announced that this year’s Annual Meeting of Members had been postponed. At the March 24 board meeting, your Board of Directors will review the most up-to-date information and recommendations from federal and state agencies to determine the best next steps for the 2020 Annual Meeting.
  • On March 14, we suspended the disconnection of electric service for members due to non-payment until April 15, 2020. We have also waived late payment fees during this time to help with the economic impact on our members. PLEASE REMEMBER, WE ARE NOT WAIVING THE PAYMENT OF ELECTRIC BILLS but allowing members additional time to pay their bill without incurring disconnection or late fees.
  • On March 18, JOEMC offices were closed to walk-in traffic until further notice. Our drive-thru windows will remain open, and we will continue to meet your needs over the phone and via email. We encourage all members to conduct JOEMC business over the phone, via our website, at our payment kiosks, or through email.
  • In addition to these changes, all employee travel has been canceled until further notice. We are also limiting the interaction of outside vendors, except for the delivery of necessary materials and supplies critical to our operations.
  • Some of our employees will work from home, and those who remain at our office will be spread out to minimize risk. Our outside crews and personnel will continue to function as they always do, and we will continue to operate 24/7 for power outages. In the event of a power outage, please report it via our website, text alert program, or call the office at (910) 353-1940.

Finally, scammers could start to target our members. Please remember JOEMC will never:

  • Call and threaten disconnection.
  • Demand immediate payment with a prepaid card.
  • Show up at your home and request access indoors; or
  • Ask for sensitive data, like banking information, through email or phone.

The safety and well-being of co-op employees and members remain our utmost priority.  This is a fluid situation, and as circumstances continue to evolve, please remember that we are committed to being responsive to the community’s needs. You can find updates in the days ahead on our website and our social media pages (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn). We’re here to help.  If you have questions about your electric service, please call us at (910) 353-1940 or email us.

Sincerely,

Jeffery T.  Clark
CEO


 

March 14, 2020

With the announcement from Governor Cooper that North Carolina public schools will be closed for the next two weeks (along with other closings in the area), JOEMC is suspending the disconnection of electric service for non-payment until April 15, 2020. Additionally, in an effort to lessen the economic impact on our members, we will also waive late payment fees during this same time.

PLEASE BE AWARE ELECTRIC BILLS ARE NOT BEING WAIVED but we are allowing members additional time to pay their bill without the account being charged late fees.

We will continue to monitor announcements from state and federal agencies regarding the COVID-19 virus and continue to review our service rules and policies.


 

March 13, 2020

Your cooperative is taking steps now to be prepared in the event there is a significant impact from the coronavirus in the communities we serve. We are focused on maintaining a healthy workforce and keeping key personnel available so that we can continue to provide the excellent service you expect from us. Read more here: