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Trinity Valley Electric Cooperative is proud to introduce Pay as You Go pre-paid electricity service.
Unlike traditional billing, Pay As You Go allows members to add money to their accounts at their convenience while eliminating deposits, late fees and monthly bills.
“It is exciting to be able to give members a new alternative for getting signed up with TVEC,” said Shannon Anderson, TVEC manager of member services. “When new members from a new generation come in, we are happy to offer things that they are used to, especially with the use of technology.”
The implementation of Advanced Metering Infrastructure meters and supporting computer systems makes the pre-paid system possible.
“One of the benefits of keeping up-to-date with our systems is that it allows us to implement technology like pre-pay,” said Jerry Woolston, manager of information technology. “Because it is all automated, you can make a payment any time of day. And if you should end up disconnected, you can be back on in 15 minutes.”
Adding the pre-paid option is the result of a two-year process, with careful attention paid to making it a positive experience for members.
“A great group of employees worked really hard to get us to this point, starting with talking to other co-ops that provide pre-paid service,” Woolston said. “They all had positive things to say and gave us great advice. Co-ops work together, and in this case their experience is a benefit for our members.”
Ultimately, the TVEC Board of Directors approved the development of pre-paid service, seeing it as a valuable option to offer.
“Our first member to sign up for Pay As You Go had moved here from another area and had pre-paid service before,” Anderson said. “It was nice to have this option for her to keep that comfort level, and also avoid a deposit.”
Members who choose Pay As You Go will need to keep an eye on their account balance, but daily text or email alerts are available, along with the myTVEC mobile app and online Member Service Portal—to help avoid any unexpected disconnections.
“It does require a close eye on your usage, which can really be a good thing because you see every day what your energy habits are doing,” Anderson said. “The benefit though, especially for anyone who gets paid weekly or just wants to even out their payment schedule, is that the members can really take control of that and pay at the time that is most convenient.”