About Our Members
The primary mission of electric cooperatives in
Texas is to provide electric power to their member-consumers,
nearly 3 million in all, but electric co-ops provide
other services as well.
Texas Electric Cooperatives:
- Assist communities with economic development
and revitalization projects.
- Provide infrastructure to support community
needs and improve quality of life, such
as water/wastewater, satellite TV, Internet
service and health-care delivery.
- Support important community organizations,
such as volunteer fire departments, schools
and local government
- Support educational opportunities by
funding scholarships for students within
their service areas.
- Educate the public about electric safety.
- Provide community assistance programs
such as the Government-in-Action Youth
Tour to Washington, D.C., which teaches
participatory leadership and citizenship
Responding to the needs and wishes of their member-consumers,
some co-ops offer propane service. Others offer long-distance
phone service and after-hours phone answering, satellite
and cable TV, Internet access and home security systems.
Still others are in the water business -- both waste
water and drinking water -- while others offer waste-disposal
Whatever the services they offer, electric cooperatives
in Texas remained focused on the needs of their member-consumers.
Meeting those needs is the sole reason they're in
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Survey Says It Again:
Consumers Love Co-ops
"Co-ops have long enjoyed a familial relationship
with their consumers," said Phil Osborne, president
and chief executive officer of The Preston Group,
which commissioned the survey on behalf of its Utilimark
division. "It would appear that the national snapshot
of customer attitudes would reinforce the cooperatives'
Customers surveyed said they were more satisfied
with service from electric utilities (43.7 percent)
than they were with their local phone company (35.1
percent) or their cable or satellite service (21.8
This has important implications, Osborne said. The
survey further noted that 56.2 percent of customers
served by electric co-ops want their co-op to expand
services to other realms, such as telecommunications
and Internet access. Overall, 43.7 percent of all
customers supported their electric utility's expansion
into such services.
By Mike Sorohan, Electric Co-op Today