In April 2021, Co-Mo Connect Powered by Co-Mo Electric Cooperative will implement a new rate structure that includes a $2.00 demand charge and reduces members’ kWh charge from 9.23 cents to 7.72 cents.
This webpage will house all educational materials, FAQs and communication items about the upcoming rate structure and demand charge after they are distributed in Rural Missouri magazine, the cooperative’s social media accounts etc.
The FAQ section of this page will continue to be updated through April 2021. If you have a question you would like to see answered in the FAQ section of this page, please fill out the short survey below. Your name and contact information WILL NOT be shared.
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FAQs (updated Oct. 26, 2020)
We are not changing the amount of money collected to offset the co-op’s expenses, just how we collect it.
The new rate structure, including the demand charge, will not take effect until April 2021.
The cooperative plans to reduce the vast majority of our members’ kWh charge from 9.23 cents to 7.72 cents and implement a $2.00 demand charge to offset the reduction of revenue.
How much will my bill change?
For the majority of our members, you will see very little change in the amount of your bill. This process is to help ensure that each member is paying a fair portion based on their energy needs. Each household is different, so how this change will impact each house will also be a bit different.
Several electric utilities in Missouri have made this change to their rate structure because it better reflects how most utilities are billed for wholesale power.
What is Demand?
Demand is the amount of power needed to supply every electrical device running in your home or business at a specific point in time. It is the maximum rate at which your household has consumed electricity, which can vary from the hour, day, week, month or season.
A simple way to describe Demand is to look at electric use similar to Internet service use. When one person streams a movie or television show on one device in your home, the stream works great. But as additional people in your house attempt to stream video simultaneously, more bandwidth is needed to ensure the stream works well. So, think of electric use in a similar manner. As more appliances in your home run simultaneously, such as your washing machine, stove and dishwasher, your Demand for power increases.
Why bill on Demand?
Breaking out Demand from Energy Use helps Co-Mo bill our members in a way that is fair. Co-Mo’s wholesale electric rates are based on total co-op demand, Demand (the rate at which electricity is used by the member), and the total energy consumed. Some members create more Demand by using more appliances simultaneously and, as a result, will have a higher demand reading on their bill.
In the past, it was easier to bill metered kWh usage. However, with affordable technology available today to capture Demand, it makes sense to unbundle Demand and make sure everyone pays their fair share.
If you are going to start billing based on Demand, how can I reduce my Demand?
All houses that use electricity generate a certain level of Demand. How you reduce that demand will be about deciding when to use appliances to help reduce the demand. For example, if you are washing clothes, don’t run the dishwasher at the same time. Or if you are cooking on the stove, hold off on putting a load of clothes in the dryer. Spreading out the use of these items will help lower your Demand Rate. However, for some busy families, saving time by using numerous appliances at the same time is more important to them than reducing demand which is fine. You will have to evaluate what is important for you and your family and make decisions accordingly.
Now is a great time to review household processes and determine if it is possible to perform high energy consuming tasks at different times of the day. Perhaps some appliances or equipment can be used in the morning and other appliances or equipment in the afternoon or evening to balance and reduce demand, with the goal of ultimately reducing peak demand.
Please remember, however, that for the majority of members, on an annual basis, this change will mean no appreciable change or even a slight reduction in cost.
How can I monitor and stay on top of Demand?
Managing your demand can be as simple as being aware and remembering to space out times where you are using large appliances instead of using them all at the same time. Another tool that can help you monitor your energy use is through the free SmartHub app. Not only will that app help you monitor your energy use, but it also lets you pay your bills and report electric outages. The app can be found in the Google Play or the Apple Store. Simply search for SmartHub. You can also be directed to SmartHub by going to www.co-mo.coop and clicking on the SmartHub icon on the homepage.