How Can We Help You?
Our goal is to ensure that doing business with Buckeye REC results in customer satisfaction. While all members might not agree with our policies and procedures, these terms of service exist to ensure that all who desire electric service can obtain it in such a manner that the cooperative operates efficiently and economically.
The work and interaction of the departments at Buckeye REC involve much more than keeping the electricity flowing and generating bills. This section will list the departments and where members or service applicants should go for assistance. Please ask for these departments when you need specific types of assistance.
Member Service Department — This department signs up new service applicants, takes orders for account transfers, service cancellations and cutoffs, deals with metering reports, collects payments via mail and in person, routes incoming telephone calls, monitors and collects delinquent accounts, takes orders for area lights, and generally serves as the first point of contact.
Consumer Services — Part of the Member Service Department, Consumer Services works with members on energy conservation programs (dual fuel rebate program, water heater radio control switches, home insulation, energy audits), high bill complaint investigations, meter tests, and meter tampering/power theft.
Engineering Department — All new services, service upgrades, or service retirements will go from the Member Service Department to the Engineering Department for design, materials listing, and cost estimating. If you apply for service and new poles, lines, and transformers are involved, Buckeye REC staking engineers will review your application and schedule a visit to the site. If you are building a new home or require service to the location of a new mobile home, the staking engineers will design the electrical distribution facilities needed to provide a safe and reliable connection to the Buckeye REC system. Upon completion of the design, payment of all fees, and proof of septic tank approval, the Engineering Department will send the job to the Operations Department.
Operations Department — Operations supervisors receive construction designs from the Engineering Department and then, after coordinating with the Warehouse on the materials list, schedule the work. Depending on the season of the year and the complexity of the job, it can take 1-2 weeks for a job to be worked. Weather conditions and distances directly impact the work schedule. Please be patient. We will start the job as soon as possible. The Operations Department is also responsible for dispatching, emergency response to power outages, substation and line maintenance/construction, routine connections and disconnects where service facilities already exist, and right-of-way (ROW) clearing/vegetation control.
ROW Management — Part of the Operations Department, ROW Management is responsible for the clearing of trees, branches, limbs, and brush in and around electric lines and substations. Vegetation is the cause of most power outages on the Buckeye REC system. Severe terrain, steep hillsides, swampy areas, and many trees combine to pose a risk to lines during wind/lightning storms, ice and snow events, and periods of heavy rainfall. Saturated ground and wind result in many "danger trees" falling on lines and knocking out power for hours. The goal of Buckeye REC's ROW Management is to cut down danger trees and create a "safety area" around electric lines to ensure reliability. ROW Management seeks to achieve at least 30 feet of clearance, from side to side, around lines. Your cooperation is vital. No one likes to see a beautiful, old tree cut down, but if the tree can cause a power outage that might affect thousands of electric customers -- some of them on life support systems -- its removal is a common sense defense against future severe weather events. ROW Management at Buckeye REC is supervised by trained utility foresters, who also oversee brush clearing and spraying programs. Call us if you see limbs or trees growing into lines or believe a tree might be a threat. DO NOT ATTEMPT to clear the line or cut the tree yourself, as this might result in the risk of electrocution or a power outage.
Accounting Department — The Buckeye REC Accounting Department is responsible for all accounts receivable/payable, payroll, and budget functions, including plant accounting and tax calculations. The Rural Utilities Service (old REA) conducts regular fiscal reviews of Buckeye REC, and the Board of Trustees authorizes an annual independent audit of the co-op's books. The audit results are usually announced prior to the Annual Meeting and are available for review by members. In addition, the Accounting Department records capital credit disbursement, equity re-acquirements, and retirements.
Administrative Services — This department includes Human Resources, Risk Control, Safety, and Training. Buckeye REC must comply with all state and federal labor laws, hiring practices, and safety regulations. Administrative Services also oversees employee benefit programs, employee safety and training, drug/alcohol testing, accident and injury investigation/documentation, and claims.
Information Technology — Computers, the Internet, and telecommunications are vital to the operation of a 21st Century electric utility. Even the Buckeye REC line and service trucks are equipped with laptop computers. Keeping this system of high-tech networks and servers functioning is the full-time job of the IT, which also oversees the programming and maintenance of the "Turtle" self-reporting electric meters.