This past year was one of transition. COVID-19 began to have less effect on our lives through the year as vaccines became available, and many businesses returned to more normal operations. The federal government underwent a shift in power between the parties and adjusted its focus to different priorities. The recovery in economic activity was hampered by shortages of materials and labor as businesses tried to recover production capacity and supply chains struggled to supply needed goods. The price of goods and services we use in everyday life surged higher, as inflation reached levels not seen in decades. That’s a lot of big changes for one year — and we’ll continue to work through these issues in the coming year.
Some things, though, remained consistent. Your electric cooperatives continued to provide a reliable supply of electricity at relatively the same price as past years. While we may not be completely immune from upward pressure on prices, our diverse mix of fuels and our steady approach to investing in needed infrastructure allowed us to keep the cost of electricity mostly steady. Once again in 2021, you scored your electric cooperative at near-record-high levels for consumer satisfaction. Thanks for noticing.
Last winter, we witnessed the devastating consequences of frigid weather in Texas, including prolonged outages and sky-high electricity prices. Ohio’s electric cooperatives are doing everything possible to prepare for whatever weather this winter brings. However, we continue to be only a small part of the overall electric system that serves this part of the country. Both fuel supplies and materials to build and repair electric systems are more scarce than we would like across much of the country. Preparations for this winter once again make it obvious how important a robust and diverse electric supply system is to our well-being.
Thanks to each of you for your continued support and patronage of your electric cooperative. We wish you and yours a blessed and happy holiday season.