West River Electric Association is the third largest of South Dakota's electric cooperatives and one of the fastest growing electric cooperatives in the region.
As a member-owned corporation, West River Electric is dedicated to providing over 14,000 member-owners with the best service at reasonable rates.
To ensure that we remain responsive to our members' needs, we are governed by a board of nine directors, elected from and by the membership. The board names the chief executive officer, who in turn is responsible for appointing the general manager that operates and maintains the system.
West River Electric offers the services of more than 50 employees, including line workers, technical and administrative staff. Consultants representing nationally recognized firms complement the expertise of our staff.
The physical plant of West River Electric consists of over 2,500 miles of line in western South Dakota located within Pennington, Meade, Haakon, Ziebach, Jackson and Shannon Counties. West River's distribution system covers nearly 100 percent in an area of 4,500 square miles in western South Dakota.
We belong to industry, state and local associations with many different interests, so that we can provide better service to you, our members, and to our communities.
As a West River Electric Member, you own the company.
It's something you use every day. You depend on electricity to be there when you need it. And it is. But as a West River Electric member, when you buy electricity you are doing more than sending a check to a utility. You actually have share in the power company that brings electricity to your home or business when you flip the switch.
What does that really mean to you as a consumer member? First, it means that because you're an owner, you have a say in how West River Electric is run. Each October at West River's annual meeting you elect people to be on a board of directors who guide West River's business.
The directors and management of your electric cooperative have a genuine interest in you. After all, directors receive their electricity from the cooperative, too. Anytime you have a problem or concern, you can call the cooperative office or your director.
Second, as a member-owner, you receive capital credits as your share in margins. West River Electric is not-for-profit and consumer owned, like the local credit union or food co-op. That means any revenue above expenses is eventually returned to you, the member, in the form of capital credit payments.
There are seven guiding principles by which cooperatives, including West River Electric, govern themselves. These principles and a synopsis of each are as follows:
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