The History of Tri-County Electric Cooperative Association
Tri-County Electric Cooperative Association’s origins are traced back to 1935 when the Rural Electrification Administration (REA) was created.
This New Deal agency was created to bring rural Americans the same comforts, like electric lights to extend the day and electric motors to ease the daily workload that modern life provided to city residents.
The rural desire for electricity was passionate, but the means elusive. The vast distances between members made stringing lines and setting poles costly, generating little, if any, profit for electric utilities.
The Rural Electrification Administration opened the door to bringing electricity to rural America. Electric cooperatives-private partnerships owned and controlled by the people they serve-emerged as the principal borrowers of REA funds. By the end of 1936, nearly 100 electric cooperatives in 26 states had been formed. Today, 1,000 electric cooperatives in 46 states serve 30 million Americans, or 10 percent of the population, and maintain nearly half of all distribution lines in the country.
Soon after the cooperative first flipped the switch in 1940, 500 members stepped into the modern age. Bringing electrical power to the area in northeast Missouri was the founding goal of Tri-County Electric Cooperative Association which is still providing its residential and industrial members with reliable, low-cost electricity and superior customer service.
Today Tri-County Electric Cooperative Association serves over 6,300 meters in Adair, Schuyler, Scotland and portions of Macon, Putnam and Sullivan counties on 1,770 mile of distribution line with annual revenues exceeding $10,000,000. Tri-County Electric Cooperative serves the towns of Lancaster, Glenwood, Livonia and Worthington and has over 26 employees. In 2008 Tri-County Electric Cooperative paid over $92,000 dollars in taxes to local governments.