Operation Round Up at Runestone Electric Association is presenting local businesses and nonprofits today with grant money. Alexandria Hubbard Radio was surprised and thrilled to receive a generous check for $2,000. This money will go towards our annual Radiothon to End Child Abuse that will take place again this December. We are grateful to have our efforts acknowledged and to make a difference in our community! The check distribution event will be held at REA today, September 9th, at 3pm. Thank you Sue Lundeen, and all of REA for this generous grant!
How it Works
REA rounds up the electric bills of participating members to the nearest dollar amount. For example, if a bill is $52.73, a member will pay $53, with all 27 cents going directly to the Runestone Electric Association Community Trust. On average, a member will contribute less than $6 a year, but no more than $11.88.
Operation Round Up is voluntary. If a member decides not to participate or chooses to discontinue contributions at any time, they may simply contact Runestone Electric. Donations to Operation Round Up are tax-deductible.
The Runestone Electric Association Community Trust Board of Directors is made up of volunteers from Runestone’s seven districts in the service territory. Board members include the following: President Rod Borden, Farwell; Secretary/Treasurer Janet Johnson, Barrett; David Lundy, Alexandria; Ron Tschaekofske, Parkers Prairie; Deborah Anderson, Farwell; Barry Wahlberg, Alexandria, and Jeff Gaffaney, Glenwood.
Operation Round Up Facts
- REA program began in 2003 to help meet the local needs in our communities
- Over 64% or 8,400 of Runestone Electric Association’s +14,000 members allow their bills to be rounded up to the next dollar
- As of August 2020, grants to local organizations exceed $1 million!
- Average annual member donation is just under $6.00 or + 50¢ per month
- 50¢ donations can make a huge difference
- Funds collected are transferred to the Operation Round Trust Account
- Operation Round Up Trust Board meets four times per year to distribute funds
- Trust Board functions separately from the REA Board of Directors
- Operation Round Up is unique to electric cooperatives
- Started in 1989 by Palmetto Electric Cooperative in South Carolina
- More than 260 cooperatives nationwide now participate
- Runestone Electric’s Operation Round Up program distributes 94% of funds collected with less than 6% spent on overhead
- This compares with an average of 25% – 40% spent on overhead for most charitable organizations
- Over 2,000 grants have been given to local organizations in REA’s service territory to serve local needs
Breakdown of grant categories and percent of dollars distributed since 2003:
Youth Programs 26%
Fire & First Responders 13%
Food Shelves 9%
Senior Programs 7%