It Pays to Be a Co-op Member
You're not just a customer, you're a member-owner of San Patricio Electric Cooperative. That means you have equity in your co-op!
What are Capital Credits?
Capital Credits are cash back for our members! We think it’s one of the best perks of being a SPEC member.
Capital credits represent each member's share of the cooperative's margins (profits minus expenses), earned in proportion to the member's energy purchases during the year. Basically, we take the money left over at the end of the year and divide it among our members according to how much electricity they purchased from us during the year.
We send you an allocation notice each year, letting you know how much money that means for you. Then your allocation total is held in an account in your name to be returned at a later date. It’s your equity in the cooperative.
When are capital credits returned?
Capital credits are not returned immediately to our members. San Patricio Electric Cooperative holds onto these funds for a number of years in order to secure loans with better terms. When the co-op receives the best funding available, it can provide lower rates, as well as keep costs down for new construction, storm repair, system upgrades and other services.
Capital credits are returned to members according to a rotation plan. Each year, the Board of Directors looks over the financial well-being of the cooperative and determines what, if anything, we can return to our members.
Why do we pay back capital credits?
Capital credits are an important part of our business model and are one of the things that make our co-op different from other utilities. We are owned and governed by the people we serve. And we believe it’s our responsibility to return money to our members whenever possible.
There aren’t many companies that give you money back! Investor-owned utilities have to answer to shareholders. Any profits they make go right back to their investors, not their customers.
However, we believe we’re connected by more than just power lines. We’re a part of your community and are invested in improving the quality of life for our members. Capital credits are one way we give back!