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More than 100 Tennesseans joined more than 2,500 co-op leaders from across the nation to participate in the NRECA Legislative Conference on May 4-6 in Washington, D.C. The conference provided CEOs, directors and co-op staffers with insights from Washington insiders and briefings from NRECA lobbyists to use during meetings with lawmakers.

Tennessee co-op leaders met with Senators Alexander and Corker as well as Representatives Black, Blackburn, DesJarlais, Duncan, Fincher, Fleischmann and Roe.

A number of issues important to electric co-ops were discussed during the legislative visits, including

“People will know that Co-op Nation is here,” NRECA CEO Jo Ann Emerson said at the first conference session May 5 at the Hyatt Regency Washington on Capitol Hill. “You do this because you know how important relationships are with your legislators and with your regulatory officials.”

View photos from the legislative conference here.

Co-ops: Access to All Options in Energy Policy Critical to Reliability, Affordability

(ARLINGTON, VA) — Jo Ann Emerson, CEO of the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA), today drew attention to the important role access to all fuels plays in the reliability and affordability of electricity in America.

“We must be deliberate and purposeful with our energy policy to avoid depriving cost-conscious American families and businesses the affordable, reliable energy they count on as a basic component of everyday life. The competitiveness of the U.S. economy depends upon options when it comes to energy and the regional, economic and demographic differences demand flexibility and freedom when deciding which fuels will keep us moving forward.

“As not-for-profit organizations that serve members in 47 states, electric cooperatives recognize the necessity of a diverse fuel mix. And by leading the implementation of efficiency technologies and renewable fuels, especially in rural areas, we’re well aware that getting to a point where innovation is possible requires as strong a foundation as possible.”

The National Rural Electric Cooperative Association is the national service organization that represents the nation’s more than 900 private, not-for-profit, consumer-owned electric cooperatives, which provide service to 42 million people in 47 states.