Operation Round Up awards distributed

A highlight of the Arrowhead Electric Cooperative, Inc (AECI) annual meeting each year is the AECI Operation Round Up Trust distribution of funds. Customer Service Representative Jenny Kartes made the presentation at the Saturday, June 9 annual meeting, stating, “I’ve been honored to be part of Operation Round Up. It’s amazing to see the benefits to our community,” she said of the program, which is funded by members “rounding up” to the dollar on their electrical bills.
Just a few cents a month adds up to a lot, said Kartes, explaining that since it began in 2003, Operation Round Up has given $195,000 back to the community.
Participation in Operation Round Up is currently 86 percent of AECI’s membership. Kartes said anyone who is not taking part who wants to sign-up can do so by contacting the co-op.
The selection of this spring’s recipients was especially difficult, said Kartes, noting that the co-op had received 22 applications for a total of $44,000. The trust had $10,000 to distribute. She then called up representatives from each of the twelve non-profits receiving funding to accept a check.

The following groups received funding:
* Junior Olympic Volleyball Team  $500 for uniforms for the Star of the North tournament in Rochester
* Grand Marais Play House  $1,000 for costumes and set construction for  “Do-Wop We Widing Hood
* Cook County Schools-Athletic Department  $2,000  for sports jerseys for football and girls basketball
* Lutsen Trailbreakers Snowmobile Club  $750 for safety signs and power to storage building
* Cook County ATV Club  $450 to support youth ATV safety training
* Birch Grove Foundation  $325 for Busy Bodies equipment
* Lutsen Junior Alpine Club (LJAC)  $1,000 for equipment for youth skiing
* Cook County Local Energy Project (CCLEP)  $338.62 for energy audits
* Cooperation Station  $192 for  energy education/science curriculum
* Cook County Kids Plus  $2,000  for Incredible Exchange
* Tofte-Schroeder Sanitary Sewer District  $700 for septic system workshops
* Cook County Athletic Booster Club  $1,000 for an electronic scoreboard at the varsity baseball field