CEO’s Message — September 2021

Now Is the Time to Seek Help on Past-Due Bills

Headshot of Clay Fitch

Are you behind on your power bill? Have the struggles of the past 18 months left you worried you may never catch up?

Many people are finding themselves on unfamiliar ground. Asking for help after a long struggle and isolation may be difficult.

Wells Rural Electric Co. (WREC)—owned by and here to serve members—stands ready to help. Please do not hesitate to reach out. Neighbors helping neighbors is the cooperative way. It is our way. But we need to hear from you.

As your local electricity provider and neighbor, we often can help with unpaid bills in a variety of ways. We can work with you to craft a payment plan, connect you with programs that help with late bills and budgeting, create conservation and energy efficiency strategies and even offer direct financial support.

Even if you have not qualified for assistance in the past, please check your eligibility. The income qualifications and benefit levels for numerous assistance programs recently changed. If you have qualified in previous years, please reapply as soon as you are eligible. Most government agencies and social service organizations are experiencing high demand, and approval may take longer than usual.

The first step is the most important. If you are unable to pay your bills or want to take control of your account, we need you to contact us right away so we can work alongside you for the best possible outcome.

In the spirit of helping our members, here are several free and low-cost tips to save energy and manage your monthly expenses:

  • Close blinds and drapes during the day to keep heat out.
  • Skip your dishwasher’s drying cycle; air-dry dishes instead.
  • Turn off lights, ceiling fans, computers, and TVs when you leave a room.
  • Replace disposable air filters—or clean permanent ones—once a month to maximize efficiency.
  • Set your thermostat a few degrees warmer to reduce the energy needed for air conditioning. Better yet, schedule an appointment with one of WREC’s licensed electricians to install a programmable thermostat to help you manage your cooling costs now and your heating costs this winter. If you have an electric forced-air furnace, visit our website and click “Save Energy” to explore products and services to help you save money, including a free Nest thermostat.
  • Sign up for budget billing, which averages your monthly electricity bill so you pay a set amount each month.
  • Use the new bill format—introduced last month—as an easier way to analyze and compare your energy use patterns.
  • Download the SmartHub app to see how and when you use electricity. SmartHub also allows you to manage your account and make payments at your convenience.
  • For a limited time, members who enroll in an electronic payment program will receive a $5 bill credit. All members who pay their bills electronically will be entered into a monthly drawing for one of 4 $25 bill credits. At the end of the year, all members who pay electronically will be entered into a drawing for an 8-piece Ring home security package valued at $1,099.

For assistance with any of these programs or promotions, please contact the member advocates at your local office.

Clay R. Fitch
Chief Executive Officer