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Dead Trees Impact Sam Houston EC Capital Credit Retirements

As a result of expenses related to taking down 170,000 dead trees following the recent extreme drought, Sam Houston Electric Cooperative’s board of directors recently elected to delay retirement of capital credits to members this year.

“As was the case in the years following Hurricanes Rita and Ike,” said chief communications officer Keith Stapleton, “the Cooperative will not retire (pay out) capital credits to members in 2013 due to the extreme dead tree situation and the financial impact on the bottom line.”

According to Stapleton, it was necessary for the Cooperative to take down dead trees along their 6,000 miles of right-of-way in order to reduce power outages and prevent safety issues, such as the massive fire that occurred near Bastrop, Texas, when a dead tree fell on a power line.

“Capital credits are an important benefit shared by members of not-for-profit electric cooperatives,” Stapleton said. “Barring another natural disaster, we anticipate returning to a normal cycle of retiring capital credits next year.”