Public Power Communities
A clean energy portfolio and economies of scale combine with local control to form the triad of advantages that matter to MEAG Power Participants. Local control allows Participants to deliver the array of advantages to the benefit of their communities with the full understanding and appreciation of local needs.
Foremost are the direct and notable economic benefits of local control. Because the community owns the electric utility, all revenue from that asset is kept and reinvested in the community. For many public power municipalities, electric revenue can be the largest single item in their budgets. Moreover, the utility employs hometown residents, who spend and invest locally.
This substantial, recurring revenue stream can help lower property taxes and fuel local economic growth and services. Utility funds support infrastructure improvements, cultural events, youth programs and more — projects everyone knows make their hometown a better place.
Most significantly, decisions concerning the residential and business electricity rates in a public power community are made in the hometown, with local input, local knowledge and an appreciation for community needs — not from a distant city, and not in a corporate boardroom, where interests of customers and shareholders are split. In public power communities, the customers are the shareholders. With common interests, local control results in self-regulation that leads only to the benefit of the community.
Cost to Participants*
*Funds from the Municipal Competitive Trust were applied to lower the Participants' annual generation billings for all these years except 2019.
To us, customers are not just a revenue source. They are an economic engine in our community, and our interest in the success of a business goes far beyond the bottom line of their electric bill.
Mayor J. Clark Boddie
This allows a community to adjust rates for various reasons: to attract new business, support an expanding one, purchase equipment, invest in new technology or assist elderly residents. Rates can be administered in numerous ways, but the direction always comes from people who live and work in the community.
Superior reliability is yet another advantage. The American Public Power Association reports that outside of major events, customers of a public power utility are likely to be without power for almost half the time of private utility customers — 75 minutes a year, compared to 142 minutes. At least part of the reason for this is that crews, equipment and administration are located nearby. Should a need arise, it can be addressed quickly and with a local understanding of the community system, its residents and business partners.
Annual Average Outage Time
for Electricity Customers*
*Excluding major events
Source: American Public Power Association