The Tennessee Electric Cooperative Association maintains a vigorous government relations practice to ensure that State government has as complete an understanding as possible of the unique needs of an electric cooperative operating in the 21st century.
Electric cooperatives operate as non-profit corporations and are large and complex businesses involved in providing a product that is critical to society. They are often both the largest taxpayer and one of the largest employers in the communities they serve. Unlike some other large corporations, however, the product provided must be delivered to the customer the same instant it is produced, and the product itself can be lethal if not handled properly. Therefore, electric cooperatives are subject to state law and regulations in a wide variety of areas.
The two primary Tennessee laws that govern the operations of an electric cooperative are the “Rural Electric and Community Services Cooperative Act” (Title 65, Chapter 25) and the “Tennessee Nonprofit Corporation Act” (Title 48, Chapters 51-69). Access to the Tennessee Code Annotated is available at http://www.lexisnexis.com/hottopics/tncode/.