Operation Round Up Plus! Makes a Difference in Our Community
A local family desperately needs a wheelchair-accessible van to transport a loved one. A food bank's shelves run low and need restocking so it can continue providing much-needed food to low-income families. A medical clinic needs funds to continue to see underserved patients in the area. What do they all have in common? Thanks to the generosity and compassion of co-op members who participate in DMEA's Operation Round Up Plus!, the answer to this question is "help in time of need."
Participating members have their monthly electric bills automatically rounded up to the nearest dollar plus any additional amount they wish to designate, This money goes to the Operation Round Up fund. From that pool of money, funds are distributed each month by a group of volunteers who serve on DMEA's Charitable Trust Board.
In 2012, a total of $70,136 was donated to 17 non-profit organizations and worthwhile community projects, and 237 member families in need. To participate in the Operation Round Up Plus! program, simply fill out the form to the right or call 1-877-OUR-DMEA (1-877-687-3632). The program is an easy and convenient way for DMEA members to get involved and make a real difference in their communities.
Q. This program used to be called "Operation Round Up." What's changed with the "Plus!" designation?
A. The program still allows you to round your monthly electric bill up to the nearest dollar with the extra cents' difference going to the Operation Round Up fund. Now, however, you have the ability to designate a monthly amount beyond those "few cents."
Q. Who decides where the money collected from Operation Round Up Plus! goes?
A. A nine-member, volunteer board called the Delta-Montrose Electric Association Charitable Trust meets regularly and reviews applications and makes disbursements.
Q. Who can serve on the Trust Board?
A. Anyone who is at least 18 years of age, a permanent resident of the county from which he is chose, of good moral character and a member of DMEA, qualified to vote in the election for DMEA Board of Directors.
Q. Are board members of the Trust paid?
A. No, they will be compensated for mileage and out-of-pocket expenses.
Q. Who can apply for assistance to Operation Round Up Plus!?
A. Individuals or groups can apply using forms provided by DMEA. Completed forms can be returned to DMEA or to a Trust board member.
Q. Are there limits on the amounts awarded?
A. Yes – no more than $2,500 annually to any individual or $10,000 annually to any group, organization or charity. By a vote of at least seven of the nine members, the Trust may exceed these limits if they feel it’s in keeping with the purpose and spirit of the Trust.
Q. What if someone has an emergency (their house burns, for example) between Trust meetings?
A. The executive committee (officers), by a vote of at least three of its members, can make emergency expenditures of no more than $1,000 between regular meetings.
Q. Will the trust be audited?
A. Yes, at least annually.
Q. What uses are specifically prohibited for Operation Round Up Plus! money?
A. No funds of the Trust can be used to support any candidate for political office or for any political purpose. Funds can be used to pay electric bills. However this is discouraged and allowable only in circumstances the Trust considers critical need.
Q. Can the Trust borrow money?
Q. If I participate, how much will I contribute?
A. If you designate no money beyond that which will "round up" to the nearest dollar, the average contribution will be about $.50 per month or about six dollars a year.
Q. Are Operation Round Up donations tax exempt?
A. Yes, DMEA will notify you on both your January and February bills of your total contribution for the previous year.
Q. What if I decide at a later date I want to withdraw from the program?
A. You can withdraw at anytime by notifying the Cooperative by phone, in person, or in writing