On Tuesday, Nov. 15, the DMEA board of directors approved a rate increase to take effect Jan. 1, 2017. No changes were made from the original proposal. Two members were in attendance at the rate hearing and six members filed comment prior to the meeting. The board reviewed all comments.
The rate increase is the direct result of a 4.3 percent increase from Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association, DMEA's wholesale power provider, and a need to accurately recover the fixed costs of operating the cooperative. The new rates reflect a pass through of Tri-State's increase through the energy charge and adjustments to the access fee, formerly called the base charge. The increase affects all rate classes.
As a not-for-profit electric cooperative, DMEA's rates are designed to recover the cost of doing business. The energy charge -- the rate per kilowatt hour -- covers the costs of purchasing wholesale energy from Tri-State and the generation of local energy. The access fee, also known as the base charge, covers the costs of operating the cooperative and delivering power. These are considered fixed costs or costs that DMEA would experience regardless of the number of kilowatt hours used by members each month. Fixed costs include items such as system maintenance, bill processing, equipment and employee wages.
A detailed listing of the new rates is available at www.dmea.com. If you have questions about how these changes will affect your account, contact DMEA's energy services team at 877-687-3632.