Delaware Municipal Electric Corporation, Inc. (DEMEC) is a public corporation constituted as a Joint Action Agency and a wholesale electric utility. DEMEC represents municipal electric distribution utilities located in the state of Delaware. The creation of DEMEC was made possible by an act of the Delaware General Assembly on June 6, 1978, and the entity was incorporated on July 12, 1979.
DEMEC members include: Newark, New Castle, Middletown, Smyrna, Clayton, Milford, Seaford, and Lewes. All of DEMEC’s member communities have owned and operated their local electric utilities for nearly 100 years or more!
DEMEC maintains a strong balance sheet and efficient, well-managed business operations. S&P Global Ratings, Moody’s Investors Services, and Fitch Ratings have assigned ratings of “A”, “A1”, and “A”, respectively, to DEMEC, maintaining an “A” rating or better for the past 20 years.
By any measure, 2022 was an extraordinarily dynamic year for the Delaware Municipal Electric Corporation (DEMEC) and its members:
- The Russian invasion of Ukraine caused natural gas prices to double overnight, with reverberations that were felt from New Castle, Delaware, to Newcastle, England, and everywhere in between.
- The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) handed down an unfavorable cost allocation from the notice of closure by Indian River Power, saddling DEMEC members and the rest of Delaware with costs that could total half a billion dollars over 4.5 years.
- Supply-chain headaches got worse for our members and for utilities across the U.S., who faced skyrocketing costs and extended wait times for distribution transformers and other essential equipment.
- At the end of the year, states throughout the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast were hard-hit by Winter Storm Elliott, threatening the stability of the electric grid and putting pressure on electric generators like DEMEC’s Beasley Power Station to over-perform.
But DEMEC and its members worked closely through the year as we always have, by acting as one, for the benefit of all. Our shared sense of purpose was guided by the Board’s adoption of four core values in 2021: “Member Focus, Operational Excellence, Organizational Culture, and Sustainability.” We added “Education” to those values in 2022.
Our natural gas hedging policy, along with higher revenue from the Beasley Power Station, were critical last year in managing wholesale power costs for the benefit of our members. While all other Delaware electric utilities had to increase their rates due to natural gas prices, DEMEC’s rates remained unchanged. If we hadn’t been faced with additional costs mid-year due to the closure of Indian River Power, DEMEC’s rates would not have increased.
Members eagerly took advantage of a greatly expanded range of professional development opportunities DEMEC offered in 2022. We’re very pleased there was such high participation and
satisfaction in both onsite and virtual learning last year. That trend looks to continue is 2023 as we construct the DEMEC Joint Lineworker Training Yard in Smyrna.
Market events stretched DEMEC and its members in 2022. To better respond to members’ needs and the changing electric industry, we added staff, who are eagerly bringing their passions, skill
sets, and fresh perspectives to their work here at DEMEC.
Delivering competitive, reliable, and sustainable power while supporting our member communities’ success and relevance is the core of our mission. That’s the foundational principle of public power and joint action agencies.
DEMEC is governed by an eight-member Board of Directors, with one director from each of the member municipal electric utilities. The responsibility for day-to-day operations of the Agency resides with a President appointed by the Board. The President directs the efforts of the staff members and various contractual relationships in place to meet the service requirements of the members.