2021 Annual Report

Anthony Smith headshot Steve Patton headshotURE is proud to partner with and serve our community by providing safe and reliable energy and contributing to the quality of life in our area with our involvement in community organizations and youth programs.

2021 was a record-breaking year for URE in terms of growth. URE managed this rapid growth while continuing to maintain impressive financial, reliability, and member service metrics, resulting in high member satisfaction marks. Your electric cooperative continues to invest in our distribution system so that our members will benefit with safe and reliable energy.

2021 distribution operating margins of nearly $1.5 million dollars combined with the allocation of capital credits from our generation provider, Buckeye Power, allowed URE to continue exceeding financial targets while retiring over $3 million of capital credits to our members. Refunding patronage capital credits to members and former members is a key principle of the electric cooperative business structure. In total, as of the end of 2021, URE has retired nearly $41 million in patronage capital to our members.

The number of homes and businesses locating in Union County has led to the highest-ever increase in new services on the URE electric system. Our crews installed 468 new electric services in 2021 and 40 new gas services, for a 3.9% net increase in new services. As measured by the number of new services added, URE continues to be the fastest-growing cooperative in the state.

Steve Patton
URE Board Chairman

Anthony Smith
URE CEO/President


URE’s rates include three components: generation, transmission, and distribution. Generation is the cost to generate electric power using the equipment owned and operated by Buckeye Power, the generation cooperative of which URE is a member. Transmission is the transport of energy from the generating plant to the individual URE-owned substations in and around our local communities. Distribution is the transport of energy over URE-owned lines from our substations to your home or business.

Generation rates have three components, with each designed to recover specific costs. The components are demand, energy, and fuel. Fuel costs include the costs of coal, natural gas, and other miscellaneous consumable items. While generation rates have been steady over the past 5 years, the fuel component had a sharp increase of 13.5% in 2021. It is expected that coal and natural gas prices will continue to rise over the foreseeable future.

As a member of Buckeye Power, URE contracts with investor-owned utilities to use their transmission grid to transport power from generation sources to our substations. This transmission cost has dramatically increased over the past several years as these companies are making large investments into their transmission infrastructures. It doesn’t look like our transmission costs will level out anytime soon, but we continue to look for ways to control overall costs.

Distribution rates, or the cost charged to operate and maintain our local electric system as well as operate the office in Marysville, remain steady and have not increased since 2014 for the residential class. As our costs for materials and labor continue to increase, it is reasonable to assume that we will eventually need to implement some type of increase on the distribution rates. However, as our growth continues to be strong, this has offset the need for increases for the past eight years, and we have no current plans for a rate increase.

Safety & Reliability

Home Safe Every Night safety demonstrationURE is committed to the highest standards of safety for our employees, consumer-members, and the public. Safety is something we value and prioritize. In 2021, in addition to ongoing training, URE management and operations personnel conducted 96 random safety observations of our field personnel, including after-hours inspections. Within the community, URE personnel also performed four hot-line demonstrations to nearly 100 children and adults in group settings. If you have a Union Countybased group that is interested in an electric safety demonstration, please contact the office for more information.

Like you, when I flip on a light switch, I expect the power to be there to light up the room. URE maintains an exceptionally reliable system and works hard to keep power outages to a minimum. In 2021, outside of major storm events, URE’s system averaged 99.99% reliability. At URE, we understand that having access to reliable electric power is critical, and when the occasional problem does occur, our operations personnel work as safely and quickly as possible to restore service.

When an outage occurred in 2021, the average duration was under 52 minutes. During major storms, the average outage duration was just over 1.5 hours.

Member Satisfaction

In 2021, URE continued with our history of high satisfaction by posting an exceptionally high ACSI score of 87. This was slightly down from our all-time high of 90 in 2020 during the pandemic. The average ACSI score in the electric utility industry remained steady at 71 in 2021. Key drivers of our continually high satisfaction score were our response to the pandemic (including the enhanced capital credits retirement), communications, convenient payment options, professional employees, and excellent reliability and outage response.

Renewable Energy

We continue to see interest from many of our consumer-members in installing renewable energy generation at homes and businesses. We appreciate the opportunity to serve as a renewable energy resource. URE provides members with the option of net metering renewable energy installations, such as solar arrays or wind turbines. As of the end of 2021, three net-metered wind turbines and 75 net-metered solar installations were connected to URE lines. If you are interested in installing renewable energy resources at your home or business, please contact our engineering department for information on URE’s costs and requirements. We are happy to help provide you with the information you need to get the most benefit from your installation.

Community Involvement

Another key cooperative principle is Concern for Community, and URE is a recognized leader in the communities we serve with our sponsorships of various organizations and events. URE is proud to support the youth in Union County through sponsorship dollars.

Our youth scholarship program four-year path winners in 2021 were Shelby Jones of Fairbanks High School, daughter of Lewis and Rachel Jones of Milford Center (first place, $2,000); Stella Moser of Marysville Early College High School, daughter of Eric and Melissa Moser of Marysville (second place, $1,500); and Joel Kunzelman of Dublin Jerome High School, son of Tara and Ed Kunzelman of Plain City (third place, $1,000). Shelby also placed second at the statewide competition for an additional $2,800 in scholarship money.

Area schools have increased the programming and curriculums focusing on career readiness, STEM, and other academic programs in high-demand employment fields. We want to make sure our scholarship programs keep pace with the pathways today’s students are exploring. In 2021, we were excited to announce new scholarship opportunities for high school seniors planning on continuing their education at either a community college or technical school. Our two-year path winner in 2021 was Emily Thallman of Marysville High School, daughter of Roxanne Thallman of Marysville (first place $1,500).

Unfortunately, due to the continued issues with the COVID-19 pandemic, the annual Youth Tour to Washington, D.C., was canceled in 2021.

2021 Scholarship Winners


Commitment to Community

Our Employees

URE Safety demonstration for a crowd of childrenOur employees are part of the same community they serve and are strong supporters of our area schools and community programs. URE and our employees continue to support groups and activities such as 4-H, the Dublin and Union County chambers of commerce, the Union County and Richwood fairs, Memorial Health Foundation, United Way of Union County, Avalon Theatre, Marysville Public Library, UCO Industries, and a host of other community and youth programs.

Operation Round Up

Three boys with a goatURE partners with you, our members, to offer the Operation Round Up program, which donated $20,726 in 2021 to community groups, including Special Olympics, Memorial Hospital’s Mobile Meals program, and several local churches for their community projects, in addition to helping individuals with rent and car repair bills. By voluntarily rounding up your electric bill to the next dollar, you and other members in our community have donated $660,000 since the program began in 1999.

Natural Gas Division

URE’s natural gas division started in 1999 and provides natural gas service in the north and east edges of Marysville. URE owns and maintains 29 miles of natural gas distribution pipeline, serving 1,398 gas members. In 2021, we added 37 new natural gas accounts. This is a growth rate for 2021 of 2.7%. The natural gas division’s 2021 net margin was $117,774.

Our gas division equity at the end of 2021 was 32.6%. Once the gas division reaches the financial levels that allow us to retire capital and remain within target levels of equity, we will resume annual billing credits to gas members.

In 2021, URE continued to provide safe, reliable, and reasonably priced electricity and natural gas to our members. From our relationship with Ohio’s electric cooperatives and Buckeye Power to our local community involvement, the “cooperative difference” is apparent at your electric cooperative.

Equity as a Percent of Assets

Target range 42% to 48%

2017 – 50.4%

2018 – 53.1%

2019 – 52.5%

2020 – 50.8%

2021 – 50.5%

Total Utility Plant

(In millions)

2017 – $89.3

2018 – $91.5

2019 – $91.5

2021 – $100.6

New Connection – Natural Gas

2017 – 66

2018 – 76

2019 – 26

2020 – 31

2021 – 40

New Connects – Electric

2017 – 339

2018 – 322

2019 – 293

2020 – 343

2021 – 468

Patronage Capital Credit Refunds

(In millions)

URE has retired over $40 million in patronage capital to our members

2017 – $2.38

2018 – 2.55

2019 – $2.89

2020 – $3.64

2021 – $3.14

URE Balance Sheets

(December 31, 2021 and December 31, 2020)


Utility Plant 2021 2020
Utility plant in service $95,335,423 $92,602,808
Construction work in progress 5,265,594 3,977,973
100,601,017 96,580,781
Less: provision for accumulated depreciation 31,824,286 29,323,948
Net utility plant 68,775,731 67,256,833
Other Assets & Investments
Retirement security plan prepayment 157,899 315,798
Investments in associated organizations 974,886 979,739
Patronage capital from associated organizations 28,200,215 28,969,332
Homestead receivable 756,160
Union Rural Electric scholarship fund 71,421 68,796
Total other assets and investments 30,169,581 30,333,665
Current Assets
Cash and cash equivalents 225,791 430,000
Accounts receivable, net of allowance 2,446,107 2,508,415
Materials and supplies 2,960,296 2,924,608
2,822,359 2,452,765
Other current assets 8,717,573 8,562,354
Total assets $107,663,885 $106,152,852

Equity & Liabilities

Equity 2021 2020
Patronate capital $53,634,851 $53,347,556
Other equities 722,312 665,181
Accumulated other comprehensive loss (17,736) (40,231)
Total equity 54,339,427 53,972,506
Long-Term Liabilities
Mortgage notes payable 39,112,477 38,753,759
Deferred credits 2,647,462 2,811,793
Post-retirement benefit obligation 1,101,766 1,128,002
Homestead retirement payable 750,766
Total long-term liabilities 43,611,887 42,693,554
Current Liabilities
Current maturities of mortgage notes payable 1,680,163 1,623,715
Accounts payable 4,656,856 4,535,041
Post-retirement benefits obligation, current portion 53,162 64,934
Accrued taxes 1,952,755 1,891,279
Customers' deposits 187,263 201,404
Current position of Homestead retirement payable 14,394
Other current liabilities 1,167,967 1,170,419
Total current liabilities 9,712,571 9,486,792
Total equities and liabilities $107,663,885 $106,152,852


Revenue & Expenses

Operating Revenue 2021 2020
Operating Expenses $59,142,996 $55,147,004
Cost of purchase power 42,451,421 39,130,222
Operations 3,133,229 39,130,222
Maintenance 1,432,844 1,434,334
Consumer accounts 688,702 690,642
Customer service and informational expense 829,186 746,316
Administrative and general 3,295,866 3,048,074
Depreciation 2,997,113 2,947,400
Tax expense 1,303,106 1,268,118
Interest - other 5,722 2,812
Other deductions 3,119 2,812
Total cost of electrical service 56,140,328 2,898,122
Operating margins before fixed charges 3,002,668 2,898,122
Fixed Charges, interest on long-term debt 1,520,902 1,502,708
Operating margins after fixed charges 1,482,766 1,395,414
Patronage Capital Credits
Generation and transmission credits 1,688,643 2,015,827
Other credits 162,544 118,802
Total credits 1,831,187 2,134,629
Net operating margins 3,312,953 3,530,043
Non-Operating Margins
Interest income 20,671 31,026
Other loss 2,318 (60,835)
Gain on disposition of property 35,625 17,253
Total 58,614 (12,566)
Net Margins 3,371,567 3,517,477
Other Comprehensive Income
Actuarial gain 22,495 42,720
Comprehensive income $3,394,062 $3,560,19

2021 Staff Serving Our Members


Anthony Smith CEO/president
Dan Bosch executive assistant
Robert McClintock safety coordinator
Steve Lentz director information technology


Dave Speicher CFO/VP of fi nance & accounting
Mike Rose controller
Marsha Fausnaugh plant accountant
Tiffany Yurkovich AP specialist
Casey Mayberry scanning clerk
Bill Cox warehouse and purchasing coordinator
Caleb Goode warehouse assistant

Member Services/Community Development

Mike Aquillo CXO/VP of member services
Beau Michael director development & energy services
Sue Gibson director communications
Barb Burns member services manager
Nicole West senior member services rep.
Amy Pack senior member services rep.
Laura Hutchins senior member services rep.
Beth Ayars member information clerk
Cindy Stoppa billing coordinator


Matt Zarnosky COO/VP of engineering & Honda affairs
Jeff Brown Honda sub & special equipment coordinator
Martin Nicol contractor coordinator
Gary Thompson operations assistant
Brian Lewis operations manager
Dana Springer line superintendent
Darin Devore crew leader
Sean Luellen crew leader
Jake Klima line technician
Caleb Bellville line technician
Ben Hoyer line technician
Sam Bevis line technician
Sam Passwaters apprentice line technician
Will Culbertson apprentice line technician
Cody Lindsey groundworker
Dalton Rowland groundworker
Ron Rowland distribution design coordinator
Ron McGlone engineer I
Ed Peper engineer II
Tim Sherwood meter technician
Hedy Nelson engineering/operations coordinator
Terry LeMaster line locator
Jesse Noble mapping technician

Natural Gas Division

Joe Love natural gas operations manager
Chat Orahood natural gas technician