News & Press
Tri-County EMC hosted its 83rd Annual Meeting on October 20. The meeting was held at the Tri-County EMC office in Gray and livestreamed on www.tri-countyemc.com and Facebook. Through voting online and by mail, 1,851 Tri-County EMC members participated in their cooperative’s annual election process.
Billy Jerles, Board Attorney, announced the election results. The proposed bylaw change to allow for electronic communication to members passed and annual meeting minutes from 2019-2021 were approved by majority vote. Cecil Patterson (Incumbent) was elected to serve a three-year term in Post 3 District 1, Jones and Bibb Counties, against candidate Doug Maddox. Incumbents Mike Rainey (Post 3, District 2: Putnam, Jasper and Morgan County), and Marion Nelson (Post 3: District 3: Baldwin, Wilkinson and Twiggs County) were re-elected to continue their service with each serving another three-year term.
During her address, Brenda P. Green, chairman of the Tri-County EMC Board of Directors, informed viewers that the cooperative’s mission remains the same – to provide reliable electric service at a reasonable cost. The cooperative remains on sound financial footing received a clean audit report. She noted that the fiber project allows us to enhance our already reliable system by allowing faster power outage notifications and the ability to reroute power from other sources during outages to keep the lights on for more of our members. In addition to increasing reliability, that fiber is also allowing the cooperative to meet the needs of members with fiber internet. “As the fiber project continues to progress, the rural digital divide is being eliminated within the Tri-County EMC service area,” said Green. “What a positive difference it is making in the lives of our members and our communities.”
Ray Grinberg, Tri-County EMC CEO, touched on the cooperative’s commitment to its members and to its community. “Tri-County is owned by the people we serve,” said Grinberg. “We have a vested interest in wanting to make your lives better by providing safe, reliable and affordable electric power.” The EMC makes a point to invest in future leaders through scholarships, youth leadership programs and educational power safety programs in the classroom. In addition, the cooperative funds $30,000 in Bright Ideas Education Grants each year to fund classroom projects to enhance the lives of our students. Ray thanked the members that choose to round their bill to the next dollar each month through Operation Roundup to benefit the Tri-County EMC Foundation. “From wheelchair ramps to food pantries, the grant projects funded through Operation Roundup have a direct local impact.”
Ray also spoke on the importance of the broadband project in the Tri-County EMC service area. “Access to the internet is as vital for life in the 21st century as electricity was when the cooperative brought to our area in 1939,” said Grinberg. He commended the employees for the outstanding job they have done bringing this project to life.
Marion Nelson, Chairman of Tri-CoGo, spoke on the ways that fiber internet is enhancing our community. “It became obvious to the Tri-County EMC Board of Directors that there was a need for internet service in our area that was not being met,” said Nelson. “We realized this was not going to be a fad that would fade away. Broadband internet is revolutionizing business, education, finance and leisure.” Over 1000 miles of fiber internet have been built and more than 3,100 customers are currently receiving service.
Greg Mullis, Chief Operating Officer of Tri-CoGo, emphasized the need of fiber internet in rural Georgia. “Only 17% of Georgians can get fiber internet, and most of that is in metro areas,” said Mullis. Tri-CoGo is working to change that. Phase 1 of the project is complete and Phase 2 is underway. Tri-CoGo is increasing opportunities in the EMC service area by allowing employees to work from home, businesses to use software they could not use before and families to connect home devices and stream television, music and games in new ways. “Fiber is more than strands of glass and data passing through it,” said Mullis. “It’s an experience that gives opportunity and changes lives.”
Tri-County EMC distributed $50 bill credits to 10 lucky members who voted in the cooperative’s 2022 Election. Tri-County EMC member Gaye Jones won the $500 grand prize. Thanks to all members that participated in the election this year. Be sure to vote in the election next year to have a chance to win.
$50 Bill Credit Winners
Carl E. Primas
Rick L. R. Prince
Frederick Stephen Uhler
JT Gregory Jr.