Over the past month, toilet paper has been stockpiled, kitchen tables have been converted into home offices and parents have suddenly found themselves in the very challenging role of schoolteacher. As we all adjust to this unprecedented time of uncertainty, it’s understandable to have moments of stress, downheartedness and even fear.
However, here in Marlboro and Dillon Counties, we are strong.
We survived and overcame a series of devastating tornado outbreaks in 1984. In 2016, we were challenged to recover from the impacts of Hurricane Matthew, and again in 2018, came together to rebuild after enduring the raging floodwaters of Hurricane Florence.
Through all this, we have prevailed. And we here at Marlboro Electric Cooperative have stood by you, our members, throughout. So, while the coronavirus pandemic is a very different type of “storm,” I know we will all weather it just as courageously.
We understand that some of our members are now facing unexpected hardships, and in response, we decreased our residential rates by 8% in March and April. For many, this will hopefully help to ease some financial challenges, but we are committed to all our members during this trying time, regardless of their current ability to pay.
As such, on March 15, MEC suspended all disconnects for nonpayment so that every member, regardless of circumstance, continues to have power as we get through this, together.
Please note that while we are committed to ensuring that everyone maintains electric service throughout this crisis, the balances will not be forgiven, and late fees will still apply. Please pay what you can to avoid building up large bills that will likely be more difficult to address later.
Meanwhile, MEC is grateful to all our members currently working to serve the community restocking grocery stores, preparing curbside pickup meals and making deliveries. We are particularly indebted to our first responders and everyone working in our hospitals and other medical facilities helping those in need.
I also want to personally thank those members who are remaining at home in order to protect the health and well being of the medically fragile and other vulnerable populations. At MEC, we will continue to do all we can to ensure our members and employees stay safe during this worldwide crisis.
Together we have weathered many storms, and together we will get through this one as well. Take comfort in your solace, your family and your faith, and we will emerge stronger on the other side.
In closing, I leave you with this passage from the Bible:
Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.
William L. Fleming, Jr.
President and CEO