Electric cooperative celebrates 75 years

Editor’s note: This is a first in a series about Roosevelt County Electric’s 75th anniversary in Roosevelt County.

By Christina Calloway
PNT senior writer
ccalloway@pntonline.com
It’s a service that thousands of Roosevelt County residents depend on, it’s been powering homes for decades, and now Roosevelt County Electric Cooperative celebrates 75 years.
It’s a milestone that the cooperative celebrates, now serving more than 2,500 customers, as it reflects back on its inception and growth.

Courtesy photos: Robin Inge  Cooperative employees working on a line in 2010.

Courtesy photos: Robin Inge
Cooperative employees working on a line in 2010.

According to the cooperative’s newsletter, here’s a timeline look at how the cooperative came to be:

  • 1937: Portales businessmen, as well as farmer-members of the Roosevelt County Chamber of Commerce, expressed interest in finding out more about the possibility of bringing electricity to the rural areas of Roosevelt County.
  • 1937: Representatives from the Chamber of Commerce traveled to Washington, D.C. with plans calling for 300 miles of line that would serve 800 homes. They returned with the approval for just 240 miles of line for 536 homes and 312 irrigation pumping stations at a cost of $400,000.
  • 1938: A newly elected Board of Directors of the Roosevelt County Electric Membership Corporation took over the duties started by the chamber and were organized as a cooperative.
  • 1939: The board submitted the first loan application in the amount of $177,000 for construction of a single substation and overhead lines to distribute electricity from Portales to Arch, Dora, Rogers and Floyd that were energized in December.Here’s a look at the numbers to compare the cooperative in its beginnings at 1941 and 2013.
    January 1941
    Connected consumers: 230
    Miles of line: 113
    Kilowatt hour sales: 14,970

    Courtesy photos: Robin Inge The 1993 Roosevelt County Electric Cooperative staff.

    Courtesy photos: Robin Inge
    The 1993 Roosevelt County Electric Cooperative staff.

    Consumer’s paid: $0.12 cents/kWh
    2013 (As of May 31)
    Connected consumers: 2,587
    Miles of line: 2,780
    Kilowatt hour sales: 70,959,580
    Consumer’s paid: $0.77 cents/kWh

    Courtesy photos: Robin Inge A cooperative employee stringing one of the first lines in 1940.

    Courtesy photos: Robin Inge
    A cooperative employee stringing one of the first lines in 1940.

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