ELIZABETH–Jo-Carroll Energy has implemented measures to protect employees and members regarding the spreading of COVID-19.
“As your local cooperative and provider of utility services, Jo-Carroll Energy is here to support our members during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic,” said Mike Casper, JCE president and CEO.
“The services that we provide to our members have been deemed by the state and federal authorities as critical infrastructure and essential services. Following Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s shelter in place order, Jo-Carroll Energy and Sand Prairie will continue its operations as normally as possible, while protecting the health and welfare of our employees, their families and our greater co-op community.”
Casper stated that cooperative crews and operations personnel are available 24/7 to handle outages and emergencies.
“Safe and reliable service have always been our fundamental objectives and they will continue to be during this pandemic,” Casper said.
In response to the COVID-19 epidemic, JCE has made significant changes in how the cooperative conducts business to help protect its continual ability to serve members safely, according to Casper.
“We have made the difficult decision to close our offices to the public and our employees are practicing social distancing to do our part to help prevent the further spread of this virus,” Casper said. “These measures will help ensure we are able to respond when you need us. We ask that you please also observe social distancing if you must interact with them.”
JCE asks members and the general public to limit contact at its offices by using the drive-thru window at the Elizabeth office; the secure drop boxes at its locations in Elizabeth, Savanna and Geneseo; by mail or online. The co-op can be reached by phone at 800-858-5522. JCE member service representatives will answer calls during normal business hours, 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.; calls will then go to an after-hours call center
Concern for community
“Every effort is being made to assist our members who may be struggling financially during this time,” Casper said. “Effective March 16, Jo-Carroll Energy is temporarily ceasing disconnections for nonpayment and suspending late payment fees or penalties for electric, natural gas and broadband so that our members can focus on their most essential needs.
“We will work with members who need assistance on an individual basis,” he added. “Call the cooperative at 800-858-5522 to discuss payment arrangement options and to learn about assistance programs that may be available to you.”
JCE has opened and made several Sand Prairie hotspots available throughout the cooperative’s service territory. These hotspots are available free to anyone who needs them. Hotspots can be found at Elizabeth Community Building/Terrapin Park, Grant Park and downtown in Galena, downtown Mt Carroll, downtown East Dubuque,
Once at a hotspot, select the “SP HotSpot” network name in the list of available networks and launch a browser.
Stay in touch
Jo-Carroll Energy members can utilize online payment options through the My Account Member Services Portal at jocarroll.com. Those who need to sign up for this service may do so by clicking “Pay Your Bill” on the homepage. Members also can download the JCE app by visiting the app store for their device and search for JCE Mobile.
Updates will be provided through both jocarroll.com and connectSP.com and on the Jo-Carroll Energy and Sand Prairie internet Facebook pages.
“With the power of community, we will get through this together,” Casper said.