We saw tremendous growth in residential and commercial members in 2022, with approximately 1,800 new members on our lines. New construction was all across the board, with single family homes, apartment complexes, senior housing facilities and small and large commercial buildings being constructed. We’re seeing growth and stability even with supply chain challenges and developers facing elevated prices.
The cooperative’s economic development team is assisting the City of Elko New Market as they kick-off the development of a 425,000-square-foot beverage bottling company at the Park I-35 Industrial Park. Once built, the facility will create approximately 50 new jobs and bring in tax revenue for the city as well as additional electric load for Dakota Electric.
Our advanced meter project is now substantially completed. The new meters are providing valuable data, improving our outage management responses and allowing us to provide better member service, such as lowering reconnection and service transfer fees. We are also seeing significant benefits due to the ability to register load management data in the Midcontinent Independent System Operator (MISO) market in real-time.
Our member services representatives have worked diligently the last couple of years to assist members who are struggling to pay their bills. Their effort to help members make payment plans and provide energy assistance information has paid off. We are proud to announce we’ve reduced the number of delinquent accounts by 45% compared to this time last year.
Dakota Electric’s board of directors and senior management are finalizing the cooperative’s three-year strategic plan and enterprise resource planning system. The process has helped inform the direction of Dakota Electric and chart the course for future business endeavors. We are excited to build on the cooperative’s continued success.
This year has provided us with more opportunities to serve our communities than in recent years. Dakota Electric organized a community food drive for The Open Door, hosted a veteran’s dinner for the Farmington Yellow Ribbon, sponsored Music in Kelly Park in Apple Valley and more!
Our members and hardworking employees make the communities we serve a better place. Thank you for all we have accomplished together in 2022. We look forward to another great year in 2023!