The CobbEMC Owners Association, a group of customers dedicated to the reform of the EMC’s Board of Directors has made great steps in returning control of the utility to its customers. CEOA-endorsed candidates took three out of four seats today, with the fourth candidate narrowly missing a majority with 49.47% of votes cast.
Only 1.3% of eligible customers voted, with 2471 votes being cast. Winners were:
Area 1, Ed Crowell 79%
Area 6, David Tennant 68%
Area 10, Cheryl Meadows 80%
In Area 7
Ron Malcolm “Cooter” Swanson took 49.47% of the vote and will meet incumbent R.J. Patel, who received 14% of votes in a runoff election on Saturday, December 3d. Meadows’s landslide victory was against incumbent Harry Balkcom
The next rounds of director elections will be held Feburay 18, 2012 and May 12, 2012. The elections are being held as a result of a four-year lawsuit brought by disgruntled customers against EMC management. Former CobbEMC CEO Dwight Brown has been indicted on 35 counts including racketeering, theft and intimidating witnesses, allegations that stem from his tenure at CobbEMC.
This election is estimated to have cost EMC customers $160,000 with similar amounts to be spent for the runoff, and 2012 elections.
Why is this such a big deal? Last year I paid about as much to my (for-profit) electric utility as I did in property taxes. I think many homeowners will find themselves in similar situations. If elected officials were engaged in the shananigans that have been alleged against Dwight Brown, voters would be sharpening their pikes for the heads of elected board members.
Congratulations to the new Directors of CobbEMC and to the customers and shareholders of the utility.