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Medina EC News

Changing Seasons and Hard Decisions

A message from CEO Herbert “Trey” Grebe III

Spring has sprung and summer is right around the corner. It’s nice to be welcomed by fresh buds on trees, greener grass and warmer days. For the cooperative, this spring season brought the return of many community and school events. Medina EC employees have been supporting our community with career day presentations, Little League sponsorships, school concession water donations and many other presentations throughout our service area. The fifth cooperative principle is Education, Training and Information and the seventh cooperative principle is Concern for Community. Being out in the public is a great way to fulfil those principles and we have been happy to be back participating in various community events.

Late spring to early summer brings graduations and the excitement that comes with them. Whether your child is graduating kindergarten, eighth grade, high school or college, this is an important milestone in life. You are probably reflecting on accomplishments they’ve made during school and obstacles they’ve overcome and now looking forward to future goals. It’s a season of change, and sometimes a season of the unknown.

I imagine many of those students graduating high school and college are having to make some hard decisions. What is next for them? Will they continue school or go to work? Will they enlist in the military? What is their housing plan? How will they pay for it? What is the most beneficial option for them?

Medina EC has also had to make a decision recently about our services beyond our initial goal to provide safe, reliable and affordable electricity to our rural service area. That additional service would be broadband.

Since early 2021, Medina EC staff has been researching the possibility of offering broadband service to our members. Unfortunately, over the course of the year as the broadband team worked with experts to evaluate multiple options, it became clear that the size and rural nature of our service territory, combined with the existing coverage from established internet providers, would make it extremely difficult to provide that service to members.

The board voted at its February 2022 meeting to not enter the broadband industry at this time.

This decision did not come lightly. Our goal to exceed member expectations in everything we do was and continues to be a driving factor in the decisions made by staff and the board of directors. The results from the research proved that a broadband service would create an unacceptable risk to our members’ assets, electric service and rates. Ultimately, the addition of broadband would not positively contribute to the reliable, safe and affordable electricity service we were established to provide. You can learn more about our broadband research and decision on Page 20 or at MedinaEC.org/Broadband.

From one season to the next, we will continue to evaluate and study future programs and services for our members.

Until next time,
Trey Grebe