News & Press
Gray, Ga— Tri-County EMC CEO, C. Hill Bentley, and Senior Vice President, VP of Energy Services, Greg Mullis, recently visited Washington, D.C. May 5-7 for the annual National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA) Legislative Conference.
During the event, 2,500 directors, managers and representatives with electric cooperatives across the nation, including more than 150 from Georgia, spent time on Capitol Hill talking about legislative issues affecting electric cooperatives and their member-owners.
“We take this opportunity to discuss our major legislative priorities and stress to elected officials the importance of supporting policies that promote affordable and reliable electricity,” says Greg Mullis with Tri-County EMC.
EMC leaders from Georgia met with members of Congress, including Sen. Saxby Chambliss, Sen. Johnny Isakson, Rep. Paul Broun, Rep. Doug Collins and Rep. Austin Scott, to voice concerns on issues which could negatively impact co-op members, namely the proposed Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulation of greenhouse gas emissions for new and existing power plants.
“These new greenhouse gas regulations could threaten system reliability and affordability for EMC members,” Mullis says. “Costs resulting from existing and future EPA regulations will be borne by EMC consumers, many of whom are not in a position to absorb higher energy costs.”
The 2014 Conference also allowed EMCs to educate lawmakers on other significant topics such as Rural Utilities Service funding and environmental laws.
During their visits, EMC leaders urged members of Congress to support these co-op priorities:
• Request that the EPA provide a sufficient period for public comment on its soon-to-be-released greenhouse gas standards for existing power plants.
• Urge senators to act on a House-passed bill enabling co-ops to continue to use large electric resistance water heaters in demand-response programs.