Site Selection magazine
twitter linkedIn facebook email email email
From Site Selection magazine, May 2014

Power Network

How Hoosier Energy’s network of electric cooperatives delivered the economic development goods in 2013, and what that means for this year.

A rendering of Hoosier Energy’s new headquarters, in Bloomington, which is scheduled to open in December 2014.
Image courtesy of Hoosier Energy


oosier Energy and its Rural Electric Membership Corporations and Rural Electric Cooperatives have long embraced economic development initiatives to help improve the quality of life for consumers. That commitment helped bring more than 1,500 jobs and $350 million in capital investment to southern Indiana and southeastern Illinois communities in 2012, earning Hoosier Energy a Top Utilities Honorable Mention for 2013 (see the September 2013 issue).

A total of 52 new projects and expansions, led by investment in the automotive, food processing and defense-related sectors, are projected to add 25 megawatts of demand for member systems.

Will 2014 be as productive as last year? Most likely, but 2013 will be a tough act to follow.


An economic development website featuring the latest site information, aerial photographs and a host of business-cost tools continued to be updated and improved. Scholarships for training community officials about economic development practices were offered through member systems, and financial support was made available to members and communities to support technical studies, site development and marketing initiatives.

Partnerships with state and local development organizations and the Indiana Department of Agriculture were strengthened as well.

More than 250 commercial and industrial accounts served by members received customized consultation about rates, energy efficiency, power factor improvement and other issues. Additional key account services included a series of seminars on school energy efficiency and compressed air systems.

It Was a Very Good Year

This year marks the 65th year Hoosier Energy has been providing a reliable power supply for its member cooperatives. Will 2014 be as productive as last year? Most likely, but 2013 will be a tough act to follow.

In August 2013, Hoosier Energy broke ground on a new, 83,000-square-foot headquarters on the south side of Bloomington. The facility will be ready for occupancy in December 2014. A Power Delivery Operations Center opened earlier this year in Owen County.

Financial highlights of 2013 include:

  • Returning $6.2 million in patronage capital to members and a $4.7 million special credit;
  • Lower member rates forecast for 2014 and no rate increase in wholesale power base rates planned for a third straight year;
  • Contract extensions to 2050 for all 18 member cooperatives, which will facilitate favorable long-term financing of capital requirements;
  • Affirmation of solid credit ratings from Moody’s and Standard & Poor’s;
  • Approval by the Rural Utilities Service of a $118 million loan for plant improvements; and
  • Locking in competitive interest rates for 2014 capital projects.

Starting in 2014, Hoosier Energy’s member systems can offer an economic development rider for up to five years if projects meet certain criteria for investment, jobs, and new electric load.

Hoosier Energy CEO Steve Smith gives credit for 2013’s strong performance to member CEOs, the Board of Directors and employees:

“Hoosier Energy is committed to building a culture of execution and continuous improvement, and employees are aggressively seeking opportunities to better manage costs and improve efficiency,” he notes in the January issue of EnergyLines, a Hoosier Energy newsletter. “The Managers Association worked collaboratively with our staff on several initiatives including comprehensive evaluations of wholesale tariffs and demand side management programs. Positive results for 2013 are attributable in large part to efforts that begin and end with the Hoosier Energy Board.”

This investment profile was prepared under the auspices of Hoosier Energy. For more information, visit or contact Harold Gutzwiller at (812) 876-0294.

Site Selection online is a worldwide service of Conway Data, Inc. ©1983-2024, all rights reserved. Data is from many sources and not warranted to be accurate or current. To unsubscribe from our print magazine, contact Julie Clarke. For general inquiries, visit our contact page. For technical inquiries contact the Webmaster.