Supporting a Brighter Future


Commitment to Community

North Carolina’s 26 electric cooperatives are rooted in the communities they serve, and they are committed to supporting their local communities and members.

The cooperatives demonstrate their commitment to the community by investing in worthy programs like the ones below, with a focus on education, rural issues and youth-related initiatives.

Jennifer Creighton-Negron, West Brunswick High School

“The Bright Ideas grants have expanded the possibilities of what we can accomplish here as teachers to meet the needs of all of our students.”

Jennifer Creighton-Negron, West Brunswick High School
Nelle Hotchkiss, North Carolina's Electric Cooperatives

“Bright Ideas now is part of a patchwork of things that we do for local communities that they count on.”

Nelle Hotchkiss, North Carolina's Electric Cooperatives

Economic Development

We’re dedicated to powering our communities in more ways than one. In addition to providing safe, reliable and affordable power, we’re investing in innovative energy projects and economic development activities that build a brighter future for our communities and help our members grow and thrive.

We support our member cooperatives:

  • Site Readiness and Development
  • Utility Rate Incentives
  • Community Development Projects
  • Business Expansion & Recruitment Services

By partnering with economic development agencies across the state, we are doing our part to support job creation and businesses seeking to start, expand or relocate.

Cooperative-led Economic Development

Businesses and regional economies thrive when communities come together and make critical investments. Electric cooperatives have long been a driving force for that growth and prosperity in North Carolina. But to keep pace with today’s market pressures and rapid change, cooperatives must be even more prepared to capture opportunities that bring good jobs and new capital investment into their communities.

“The southeast United States is the Major Leagues of competitive economic development,” said Ryan Nance, Director of Economic Development for North Carolina’s Electric Cooperatives. “Companies decide where they will expand or relocate based on in-depth evaluations of a region’s assets and risk factors. Electric co-ops and local leaders are winning deals because they are making proactive investments that build upon a region’s assets and mitigating risk that imped industry growth.”

Cooperative Ready Sites

Electric membership cooperatives have a long history of supporting economic development, and the Cooperative Ready Sites program strives to help communities by elevating the competitiveness of their industrial sites.

The criteria for certification include many of the due diligence steps required by the NC Certified Sites Program. NCEC will go beyond the North Carolina program in the amount of community and site data gathered.

Once a site is approved into the program, NCEC will pay 75% of the cost of site certification for member cooperatives (or up to $20,000). The community (cooperative, economic development organization, local government, landowner, etc.) will pay the remaining 25%.

Benefits of becoming a Cooperative Ready Site:

  • Special recognition on the NC Electric Cooperatives website and in marketing materials.
  • Marketing and promotion by NC Electric Cooperatives’ economic development partners.
  • Research and analysis to share with prospective companies.
  • Increased interest from companies searching for sites for new locations and expansions.
  • Increased tax base, jobs, and electric load when a company locates on the site.


Retention & expansion tool kit

  • Loans for technology investments
  • Grants for eligible energy efficiency upgrades and renewables

Building & Site Investments

  • Up to $2 million loans available at 0% interest
  • Grants for certification, development and marketing
  • Electric and fiber optic infrastructure support

Electric Rate Resources

  • Flexible energy pricing and incentives rates
  • Smart energy savings programs


  • Reliability & resiliency solutions (custom micro-grids)
  • Loans for EV charging stations
  • Efficiency upfits, renewables, audits

Contact Us

Ryan Nance
Director, Economic Development

$70M in Grants and Loans for Economic Development
$1B in New Capital Investment
5,000 Jobs Created in Rural NC


We work to represent the interests of North Carolina’s 26 electric cooperatives and their members in both the North Carolina General Assembly and Congress. Our lobbyists strive to positively impact legislation that affects the 2.5 million users of electric cooperative power statewide.

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