IMPORTANT NOTICE:

The 2021 Annual Meeting Director Election is open for proxy voting May 28 - June 18. Click here to learn more.

As a provider of essential services, GVEC couldn’t simply shut down while the world figured out how to navigate through the unknowns of COVID-19. We had to adapt to remain productive and safe despite what was going on around us. Normal, everyday procedures for delivery of electric, internet and other services had to be re-thought. Accomplishing this meant managing changes efficiently. Communicating clearly to our customers, adjusting quickly to new safety protocols, closing lobbies, transitioning to working and meeting remotely, all were vital to continue delivering the products and services depended on by so many.

Read the full 2020 Annual Report here.

As a provider of essential services, GVEC couldn’t simply shut down while the world figured out how to navigate through the unknowns of COVID-19. We had to adapt to remain productive and safe despite what was going on around us. Normal, everyday procedures for delivery of electric, internet and other services had to be re-thought. Accomplishing this meant managing changes efficiently. Communicating clearly to our customers, adjusting quickly to new safety protocols, closing lobbies, transitioning to working and meeting remotely, all were vital to continue delivering the products and services depended on by so many.

It came as no surprise, our entire GVEC employee base stepped up to meet the challenge for our members and customers almost seamlessly, and we could not be more proud of our Cooperative team. As COVID-19 impacted many local businesses in the GVEC area, including GVEC, we are pleased to report that in spite of the global pandemic, we experienced strong business growth overall.

While following guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and with appropriate safety and health precautions in place, our beyond the meter services including AC/heating, solar and battery storage, and electrician services were able to continue delivering much-needed services for customers throughout our region. AC/heating repairs and installations helped keep people comfortable as they spent more time in their homes. Interest in residential solar panel systems and battery storage continued to grow as it moved out of the early-adopter stage and became more mainstream. And our Electrician services sustained growth into its third full year with electricians continuing essential work.

As many GVEC employees began working remotely after the onset of the pandemic, so did many of those we serve. This included students enrolled in schools and parents abruptly switching from in-person classrooms and workspaces to online learning and working from home. This resulted in high demand for GVEC Internet in the areas we serve, and we were able to install new Fiber and Wireless service in record time for many finding themselves in need of dependable connections.

On the electric side, our line inspections and maintenance routines were continued without interruption, as these are an integral part of supporting the integrity or our grid and delivering dependable service to our members. To that same end, new construction of substations and major projects were completed as planned to meet the needs created by the many new homes and families making their way into the Guadalupe Valley.

We were also able to complete the transition of our demand response program from Rush Hour Rewards ™ (RHR) to Peak-Time Payback (PTP). This allowed our members more opportunity to participate in this beneficial program that helps consumers save on their energy consumption while also helping the Cooperative keep transmission rates stable.

In 2020 we also stepped up to help local businesses struggling during COVID-19 restrictions. GVEC began showcasing some of them on our social media outlets to let customers know what businesses remained open, of changes in hours or offering new curbside or delivery options, or if online ordering was available.

GVEC also quickly responded to the sudden financial loss many individuals and families experienced as well. During a time of apprehension for so many, the last thing we wanted was for our members and customers to carry the additional worry of incurring extra fees or having services cut off. We immediately suspended late penalties and non-payment disconnections on electric and internet services. We also adjusted our payment arrangement policy and continued working with our members and customers according to individual needs and circumstances into 2021.

Furthermore, recognizing the responsibility to support our members, especially at a time financial concerns may have been higher than usual for many, our Board of Directors took steps to help ease those concerns where possible. In March 2020, the GVEC Charitable Foundation Board voted to add additional funds to the Power Up™ community assistance fund in the wake of COVID-19. And in July, we gladly announced the largest-ever distribution of capital credits in the Cooperative’s history—$6.6 million in patronage returned to GVEC member-owners.

In the pages ahead, you’ll read in more detail, GVEC’s successes in 2020 as we navigated our way through unprecedented conditions brought about by the global pandemic.

That being said, it would be remiss not to acknowledge the impacts the historic winter freeze had on GVEC.

Just as the year ended and we were beginning 2021 in a strong position, the historic winter freeze occurred. Record demand and significant generation outages resulted in extreme market prices for electricity. Though we did adjust rates in May 2021 to cover these costs over time, we remind you GVEC is a not-for-profit cooperative who always keeps its members’ best interests at heart.

As we’ve begun returning “back to normal” and continue to move forward, we hope what you read will help build your sense of confidence, knowing you’re a member of a strong Cooperative focused on empowering you, come what may.

At GVEC, we have always made it a priority to positively impact the communities in which we live and do business. This is why we recognize the importance of identifying and delivering products and services that empower the people and communities we serve. Though we still may be facing a few uncertainties, there’s an unwavering certainty that continues: No matter what obstacles or circumstances arise, GVEC will always remain focused on putting people before profit, doing what is right by our customers and continuing to empower life in the Guadalupe Valley.

Respectfully,

Lewis Borgfeld                  Darren Schauer

President                            General Manager and CEO

Read the full 2020 Annual Report here.

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