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If you were a member of York Electric Cooperative for any period between Jan. 1, 2007–Jan. 31, 2020, you may receive an unexpected bill credit or check this month.
These credits (for amounts of $50 or less) and checks (for amounts greater than $50) are the result of a class-action settlement involving the failed nuclear construction project at V.C. Summer Nuclear Generating Station. The funds are being paid by Santee Cooper, a state-owned utility that partially owned the project.
YEC did not own the project. However, because we buy from Santee Cooper some of the power we deliver to our members, some members may be due bill credits or payments. Your cooperative did not calculate the payments. They resulted from a court-approved process after a settlement agreement was reached between the parties in the class-action lawsuit.
Cook v. Santee Cooper Class Action Lawsuit Website
Frequently Asked Questions
Santee Cooper Class Action Lawsuit Settlement Funds Distribution
- I noticed a credit on my bill (or, I got a check in the mail) for something related to a class action settlement. What’s that about?
A class-action lawsuit was filed in 2017 following the failure of the construction project for two nuclear units at the V.C. Summer Nuclear Generating Station in Fairfield County. Santee Cooper and SCE&G (now Dominion Energy) were the owners of the project. The lawsuit argued that consumers should not have to pay for the nearly $9 billion in costs that were sunk into the failed project and essentially lost with nothing to show for them. Your cooperative was not a party to the case, but your rights were affected. Before the lawsuit went to trial, the parties came to an agreement and settled the suit. The settlement agreement called for $520 million to be returned to customers of Santee Cooper and the members of electric cooperatives.
- How were the credits issued?
Cooperative members who were due more than $50 got a check in the mail. Cooperative members who were paid $50 or less got a credit on their electricity bill.
- Did the cooperatives—and specifically my cooperative—own part of the failed nuclear units?
No. But our power supplier, Central Electric Power Cooperative, buys a lot of the power we use from Santee Cooper. And Central was required to pay for part of the construction project while it was ongoing. So, Central and York Electric Cooperative’s members are due some of the settlement funds that are being returned. That’s why you’re getting a payment.
- Is the bill credit I got this month all there is?
Yes. The first bill credit or payment members received in 2020 represented about 70% of the amount coming to you. A second credit or payment for the remaining 30% is being applied in February or March. That’s the way the plan was set up by the court. We don’t have control over the timing.
- My bill credit sure was small. Why so little?
Payments were calculated based on how much electricity you purchased during a specific time period through January 31, 2020. So, if you were only a member for a short amount of time before then, you really didn’t pay much for the nuclear plant’s construction.
- Why didn’t I get any money?
The class in the class-action lawsuit included only those people who were members through January 31, 2020. So, if you came online with the cooperative afterward, you did not have charges on your electric bill inside the class period.
- How was my amount calculated?
Your share of the settlement was based on your power use, but York Electric Cooperative did not perform the final calculation. That was between the court and the firm hired to administer the settlement, a firm called Epiq (pronounced eh’-pic), a global firm in the legal services industry. If you have any questions regarding the administration of the Settlement, you may contact the Settlement Administrator. Please include your name and your return address on all correspondence.
- Cook v. SCPSA, Class Action Administrator, P.O. Box 3127, Portland, OR 97208-3127
- 1-833-947-0894 (Toll-Free)
- Frequently Asked Questions (external link)
This month brings the first day of spring on the 20th, which means the days are getting longer and one of our greatest renewable energy resources is higher in the sky. The sun makes folks think of solar energy—but is solar right for you?
That’s where your co-op can help. York Electric, as your trusted energy advisor, is always looking out for you. We want your bill to stay low, your energy investments to be smart and your service to stay reliable. Let’s talk about your options with solar energy, what your co-op is doing to help you navigate this energy resource and how we are using the sun in your energy mix.
Many of our members already have been approached by a solar company that encourages them to make a hefty investment in home solar installations.
While this option makes sense for some members, it isn’t the best fit for all. Perhaps your HOA doesn’t allow rooftop solar, or your house isn’t in a prime location for sun exposure to offset your energy use. That’s why YEC has a community solar option for members to invest in this renewable energy source without the overhead cost of installing their own panels. We have subscriptions available and are happy to get you connected and invested in this green, easy way to support renewable energy.
New solar advisory tool
Integrated on YEC’s website is a new, easy-to-use tool that helps you make an informed decision on solar for your home. If you are interested in going all-in on solar, make sure you talk to your co-op first so that your investment pays off. Additionally, our Solar Advisory Program offers a one-on-one consultation about your house, your rate of return on your solar investment and potential energy savings so that you have peace of mind on your choice.
Solar investments in your energy future
Central Electric Cooperative, which serves as our generation and transmission cooperative for cooperatives in South Carolina, is developing more than 300 megawatts of new solar projects and will develop another 1,500 megawatts of solar over its planning horizon in the next few years. This additional solar is part of a larger effort to further diversify the cooperative’s energy supply mix, ensuring years of reliability, sustainability, and energy responsibility for members.
Whether you are ready to commit to green energy or just want to learn more about what’s out there to suit your lifestyle, your co-op is here with the facts to help support you. We are proud to be more than just your electric utility, but also your source for power and information to make your life better. If you have questions about solar, please reach out to our team members listed below. We’re always ready to serve you.
President and Chief Executive Officer
New Fort Mill location this year for Annual Meeting registration, voting
For the first time, York Electric Cooperative will host a new, additional registration and voting site in Fort Mill on Wednesday, May 3 from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. at our operations center at 2000 Highway 21 Bypass. This location is across from Captain Steve’s Family Seafood Restaurant.
Above, you will find a map to help you navigate your way to this location if this is the most convenient time and place for you to attend to register and vote as a member of YEC.
The same smiling faces will be there to help you through the line so you may register and vote right from the comfort of your car. Please remember to bring your registration card and a valid photo ID to register for your $25 power bill credit and to vote as a co-op member.
Additionally, all persons who register in Fort Mill will be included in all prize drawings during the business meeting, as well as a special drawing for a $500 power bill credit for one lucky member who registers at our new location on Wednesday, May 3 in Fort Mill.
If you can’t make it to Fort Mill on Wednesday, May 3, we hope to see you at our main office in York at 1385 E. Alexander Love Highway from 7:30 a.m. until 2 p.m. on Saturday, May 6. We look forward to serving you and celebrating the value of your membership.
What you need to know:
- All members with a valid photo ID will be registered as a member of YEC and will be eligible to vote at the annual meeting.
- Members who attend and register at one of the two locations will receive a $25 power bill credit on their June power bill.
- Members who register and vote will be entered into a prize drawing during the virtual business meeting that will air on Saturday, May 6 at 5 p.m.
- Hot dog, the hot dogs are back! This year, we will give away free hot dogs to members in York on Saturday, May 6, beginning at 9 a.m. until we run out.
See you there!
York Electric Cooperative Annual Meeting registration, voting
Wednesday, May 3 New location!
Fort Mill Operation Center
2000 Highway 21 Bypass
10 a.m.–2 p.m.
Saturday, May 6
York Electric’s Main Office
1385 E. Alexander Love Hwy.
7:30 a.m.–2 p.m.
One of our priorities at York Electric Cooperative is to be our members’ trusted source of relevant energy information. As a cooperative, we take this responsibility seriously because we aim to serve you beyond the power in your house. To carry out this goal, this relationship must also extend to those serving you and me—our lawmakers at the State House and in Washington, D.C.
Every year, South Carolina’s General Assembly, the U.S. Congress and governmental agencies consider issues that affect our members. Whether it is legislation or regulations involving energy generation, tax breaks, infrastructure funding or anything else that impacts your quality of life, we strive to make certain that cooperatives are a trusted source of reliable public policy analysis. That’s why we work closely with elected officials, ensuring that they understand and are enabled to act on the issues that are important to our members.
The cooperative model provides a strong network of resources that helps us cultivate these relationships and advocate for you. It’s a collective effort that involves our staff, trustees and our cooperative partners statewide and in the nation’s capital. Fortunately, more often than not, we see those relationships and that advocacy yield positive results for cooperative members and our state as a whole. Last year, the General Assembly passed, and our Governor signed into law, legislation that did just that.
One piece of legislation increased tax credits to entities, such as YEC, that are engaged in infrastructure and development projects. This helped us invest in projects such as our new commercial and industrial business park on Hwy. 321 in York and continue site-readiness work to attract industry to our area. This economic activity can have a positive impact on those living here locally and it can help lower the overall price of power for YEC members, making our systems’ use of generation resources more efficient.
Legislators’ understanding of how we operate and educate our employees was crucial in a driver training bill that passed last session. It allows our statewide association, which provides much of the training to our workforce, to offer entry level driver training now required to obtain a Commercial Driver’s License (CDL). Without this allowance, cooperatives would be forced to absorb an added and unnecessary expense.
We’re thankful for our elected officials and the relationships we have with them. We’re encouraged when they seek our expertise on energy-related issues and trust our input when bills that matter to us are being considered.
With a new legislative session just beginning, we’ll continue to serve as a trusted source for you and for our elected leaders, standing by our mission to always look out for you.
The East York Industrial Park was York Electric Cooperative’s first large economic development project that began after many textile industries left our area. Providing enticing locations for industrial customers to land not only helps bring quality jobs to our community, but it also helps keep power costs low for all members.
President and Chief Executive Officer
by R. Marc Howie, Vice President of Community Development
Working together is part of the cooperative culture and one of the ways York Electric is able to fulfill our goal of making a positive impact in our communities. We can all agree that our local and state government has a considerable influence on where we live and our quality of life, which is why it is so important for your electric cooperative to form meaningful relationships, building trust and support to those who matter most—our members.
York Electric is proud to work with such a strong local delegation at the SC State House who, like your co-op, puts the best interest of our members and their constituents first. In my role at York Electric for over 25 years, I’ve had the honor and privilege of building these relationships with political leaders in Columbia; but this year will be a little different. Gary Simrill, majority leader of the South Carolina House of Representatives from 2016 until May of 2022, served our area for 30 years. Gary’s commitment to his elected duty and well-rounded views on what is best for all South Carolina residents will be greatly missed.
I’m proud to know Gary professionally and would be remiss if I did not show my sincere appreciation to him for his steadfast support of York Electric Cooperative. His good character made my job easy. He was always responsive and quick to return a call or text, he had a strong voice that was respected by all parties, as well as constituents from urban and rural areas, had the best interest of our state at heart and studied issues before speaking or making rash decisions. Like me, folks respect Gary, his willingness to get the job done and the humility he showed by never caring who got the credit. He was never afraid to cross the aisle if it meant finding a compromise to help our members, our area or our state.
Personally, I’m honored to call Gary my friend, fellow Winthrop alum and York County native. Although we will miss him in Columbia, it is nice knowing he is still working and supporting our community in his new role at Winthrop University, continuing his efforts to make our area the best place to live. Thank you, Gary.
Exciting trip, scholarship and art contest opportunities are available for local students of all ages! Learn more and apply now by scanning the codes below. As your Touchstone Energy Cooperative, York Electric firmly believes our educational efforts can have a far-reaching effect not only for the individuals we help but for the community at large. We believe educational outreach is one of the most important things we can offer.
|Washington Youth Tour, Cooperative Youth Summit Application
Apply by February 24, 2023
|Scholarships for seniors
Apply by March 25, 2023
Apply by April 7, 2023
As We Welcome a new year, your York Electric Cooperative Board of Trustees continues to work as a team to serve you with affordable, safe and reliable electricity. Our boardroom table has been full of conversations thinking of you, our valued members, and our goal to govern your cooperative so that your voice is heard, your bills are low and your lights stay on.
Looking back on our accomplishments in 2022, we are proud to have invested in our infrastructure, strategized to maintain low rates despite economic challenges and damaging storms and increase the availability of rural internet to many of the unserved members in our territory, all while being able to return the largest amount of capital credits to members in your co-op’s history—$2.5 million.
Additionally, we’ve been discussing the future. Each day, the electrification of the economy becomes more of a reality than a theory and we want to assure you that your co-op is prepared. For example, we are working with other cooperatives across South Carolina to continue learning about electric vehicles so that our delivery system, employees and members are educated on what may come. Last year, we launched the ChooseEV tool on our website to help with EV education and information. This tool includes real-time data and cost projections so that members are informed before making an EV purchase.
We continue to be good stewards of each dollar that comes in to the cooperative as we invest in projects that make your service more reliable, your distribution system more resilient and the process to conduct business easier for members. Our board’s financial responsibility for the integrity of your co-op and future plans has been crucial as our energy future evolves.
Most of all, and I speak on behalf of my eight other colleagues, we are proud of our employees and the tremendous job they do for you. On the accompanying page, let’s look at what we’ve been able to accomplish together.
It is my privilege to lead our board, support the great work our team of employees accomplishes for our members and to always look out for you.
Max T. Settlemyre
Board Chairman, District 1
Year in review
A recap of YEC’s major accomplishments in 2022
Everything we do is in service to our members. So, we want you to know what’s been done to keep our services to you safe, reliable and affordable. Here are some of the milestones that made 2022 a successful year for York Electric.
- Onboarded and trained new employees.
- Placed 4th among midsized companies as one of SC’s Best Places to Work.
- Trained employees to provide consistent information to members, improve job skills and support additional education efforts to better serve you.
- Installed state-of-the-art equipment in two of our substations.
- Installed smart devices that locate and isolate outages across our system. Began construction of the new Flint Hill Substation; estimated completion May 2023.
- Worked towards completing our goal of burying distribution lines underground in areas that are hazardous and hard to reach in outage situations. This year, we accomplished 1.5 miles of this task and are proud to be over halfway finished with our goal.
- Added 29 major projects to our system, including large residential subdivisions and commercial sites.
- Received a score of 94 from members on the American Customer Satisfaction Index survey.
- Our team has driven 603,816 miles and answered 114,812 calls to serve you.
- Excluding large storm events, our lineworkers responded to all outages within one hour of the first report 99% of the time.
- All mailed payments are now processed in the York office for better service and efficiency.
Financial, system security
- Trained all employees on the importance of awareness of cyber security.
- Integrated new technologies to process eCommerce payments more efficiently.
- Developed inclement weather and outage response tools for our Information Services and Member Services teams.
- Created an incident response plan to better prepare for handling security incidents.
- Installed 480 miles of fiber.
- High-speed service is now available to 3,500 previously unserved members.
- Through our partnership with Comporium, 1,100 members are signed up for this new service.
- We expect completion of our Rural Internet Project by the year-end of 2023, providing access to over 5,000 unserved members.
- Provided $13,500 in scholarships for high school seniors.
- Provided $14,500 to local teachers through our Bright Ideas Grant Program.
- YEC’s Operation Round Up Program, which is completely funded by our generous members, supported the most vulnerable in our community with $250,315 in charitable donations. Since it began in 2000, the Operation Round Up Program has provided over $3.6 million in community support.
- Continued working with local economic development leaders to bring more quality jobs to our area, invest in local infrastructure and develop new commercial opportunities to attract businesses that will positively impact our area.
- Purchased 32 acres on Hwy. 321 in York for future business park development.
Your co-op has two amazing trips planned this summer. Juniors: Apply for the Washington Youth Tour. Sophomores: Apply for the Cooperative Youth Summit. The application deadline is February 24, 2023.
Washington Youth Tour: June 17-22, 2023
Juniors: Experience Washington, D.C., with hundreds of students from across South Carolina and the country, meeting lawmakers and touring all the sights. Your electric co-op will cover your round-trip plane ticket, tours and meals. In other words, it’s all free!
2023 Cooperative Youth Summit: July 10-13, 2023
Sophomores: Experience South Carolina’s capital like never before. Tour the Statehouse, meet lawmakers and see how co-ops are preparing for our state’s energy future. Plus, there’s plenty of fun with visits to popular Columbia attractions like Riverbanks Zoo & Garden. Your electric co-op will cover all your expenses. We’ve made it easy to apply for either FREE trip.
Live Smart. Save More.
Take advantage of our Smart Thermostat Program to easily save on heating and cooling costs.
Interested in installing panels on your home? Let YEC be your trusted source of information.
Beat the Peak
The Beat the Peak program is a free and voluntary effort to help control energy costs for all cooperative members.