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Stay safe around electricity this holiday season

Stay safe around electricity this holiday season

December 10, 2019 – While staying safe around electricity is important year-round, it is especially important to keep electric safety in mind during the holidays.

Inspect all decorations before use.
Damaged sockets, exposed wires and bad connections could cause electrical shock or even a fire! After inspection, use caution when plugging in your holiday decorations. Be careful not to overload outlets. If using incandescent lights, do not connect more than three strands as this could potentially blow a fuse, or worse yet, cause a fire. More than one hundred fires happen per year due to issues with decorative and holiday lights.

Keep your tree watered.
A dry tree is a fire hazard. Water your tree daily, and be sure to remove it from your home when it has died or immediately after the holiday is over. Hundreds of home fires start each year because of Christmas trees!

Choose battery-operated candles.
Invest in battery-operated candles which are much safer than normal candles. Normal candles cause nearly half of home decoration fires.

Protect cords.
Be sure to never pinch cords, hide them under furniture, place them near a heat source or secure them with nails or staples. Any of these could cause electric shock or a fire. Unplug all cords when not in use to stay safe while saving electricity.

Unplug when not in use.
Never leave holiday lights on when not home or while sleeping. It is estimated that half of all home fires happen between 11 p.m. and 7 a.m.

For more tips on staying safe around electricity, visit LCEC wishes all a happy and safe holiday season!

Just say no to heating

December 3, 2019 – The weather outside isn’t quite frightful, but it is chilly for sunny SWFL! As tempting as it might be to switch on the heat at night, LCEC reminds customers that heating is the most intense use of electric energy and the most expensive electric appliance. On average, heating costs two to three times more than cooling. Rather than risking a high electric bill, bundle up with blankets or cuddle even closer with your favorite person or pet. If it is still too chilly for your Florida blood, you might consider investing in heating blankets and small portable heaters. Blankets and space heaters work well, but caution must be used and all the manufacturer instructions read before use. If all else fails and you are chilled to the bone and must turn on the heat, LCEC recommends setting the thermostat between 65 and 68 degrees Fahrenheit. For more ways to save on your electric bill, visit

Don’t be an energy turkey this Thanksgiving

November 26, 2019 – As your prep your home for family, friends and Thanksgiving day fun, be sure to include energy savings in the mix. With these simple steps, you can prevent yourself from being an energy turkey while gobbling up savings:

Ode to your oven:
Your oven treats you well! Treat it well this Thanksgiving by cooking multiple things at once and resisting the urge to peek into the oven will keep your oven working only when it needs to. If you can cook some appetizers, dinner and dessert items at once, you can cut down on your electric usage while giving your oven a much-deserved rest. Remember that every time you open your oven, the temperature drops by 25 to 30 degrees in addition to raising the temperature in your kitchen.

Be a microwave maven:
Microwaves use half as much electricity as conventional ovens, and cook items in a shorter time. Consider using your microwave to cook smaller items like side dishes, and leave the big dishes for the oven.

Be brilliant when it comes to burners:
Make sure you match up pots and pans to your burners. Using a small pot on a big burner wastes electricity.

Give your fridge some free time:
Your fridge works hard all the time! Consider using a cooler rather than opening your fridge over and over to get out cold items like drinks. Be sure to give hot food time to cool down before storing them.

Let your dishwasher do its thing:
Save time, water and electricity by using your dishwasher to clean your Thanksgiving mess. If possible, scrape food from dishes to prevent the need to pre-rinse. Be sure to fill it completely to get the most bang for your buck!

Happy Thanksgiving from your friends at LCEC!

LCEC Volunteers Ready to Deck the Halls for Holiday Nights at Edison & Ford Winter Estates

November 12, 2019 – LCEC employees, friends and family are gearing up to once again volunteer to decorate the Edison & Ford Winter Estates for their 44th annual Holiday Nights! During Holiday Nights, the Edison & Ford Winter Estates are adorned with thousands of lights and period decorations from the 1880s to the 1920s. Each year, volunteers from local organizations and businesses are invited to take part in the honor of decorating this local landmark. Holiday Nights runs from November 29-December 23 and December 26-30 from 5:30-9 p.m. In addition to enjoying the lights and holiday décor, attendees can partake in live music, food, beverages, crafts, Inside the Homes tours, and more. For more information about Holiday Nights, call 239-334-7419.

Protect yourself from sneaky scammers

November 5, 2019 – Scammers are relentless when it comes to their attempts to trick people out of money and/or personal information. What’s worse is that scammers are upping their game, using more sophisticated and intimidating strategies. The only way to truly protect yourself is to be aware and vigilant in safeguarding your personal information. When it comes to a utility scammer, LCEC reminds customer to…

Know what to look for:
• Someone pretending to be an LCEC representative to get into your home
• Anyone soliciting your personal information or trying to sell products and services over the telephone or through the mail on behalf of LCEC
• Requests for personal information by email or websites appearing to be sent from LCEC
• Someone requesting immediate cash or “gift card” payment in person

Know how to protect yourself:
LCEC employees and contractors are frequently in your neighborhood to perform routine maintenance, energy services, and conduct tree trimming. All LCEC employees and contractors carry a photo identification badge and can provide work documents with corporate contact information. Ask to see proof and call LCEC to verify, if you are in doubt.

Know that LCEC will not:
• Come into your home without making arrangements ahead of time
• Solicit personal information over the phone, unless you initiated the call
• Threaten to close your account if you do not take the immediate action of providing personal information
• Visit your home offering cash refunds on deposits or electric charges. We either credit your account or mail a check to your electric service address

Trust your gut:
• If someone suspicious is on your property claiming to be an LCEC representative, ask to see photo identification badge or work request number
• Contact LCEC at 239-656-2300 to inquire if representatives are in your area or to ask about your account
• Do not allow anyone into your home if you feel uneasy about if they are actually from LCEC
• Do not provide personal information such as bank account numbers, passwords, social security number or credit/debit card numbers over the phone unless you initiated the call
• Ignore suspicious emails that urge immediate action or request personal information
• Do not trust contact information provided in suspicious emails

For more information on protecting yourself from scammers, types of scams and how to report fraud or scams, visit the Safety tab on

Stay spooktacularly safe this Halloween

October 29, 2019 – Candy, costumes, pumpkins and trick-or-treating are just a few things that come to mind when Halloween comes to town. It is easy to forget the most important part of Halloween…safety! Below are a few tips to keep in mind to have a spooktacularly safe Halloween night:

Choose costume wisely:
Whether your tot wants to be a princess or a villain, be sure that any costume you buy is flame-resistant, flame-retardant and/or non-combustible. It is also wise to skip on swords, masks or any accessories that could be dangerous while trick-or-treating after dark. If an accessory like a sword is a must, seek out props that are short, soft and flexible.

Driving cautiously:
Drive slowly, watching for children in roadways, medians and near curbs. If at all possible, do not drive on Halloween night, and especially do not allow new or inexperienced drivers to frolic around town when there will be so many children out in dark clothes and costumes.

Walk in groups:
Never trick-or-treat alone. It is best to walk in groups with at least one adult. It is also smart to bring flashlights with you, and fasten reflective tape to costumes and trick-or-treat bags for better visibility.

Thoroughly check candy:
All candy and goodies collected should be examined by an adult before eating to ensure there are no choking hazards or signs of tampering.

LCEC wishes you and yours a safe and fun Halloween!

LCEC’s 8th Annual Goblin Gallop 5K Run/Walk for United Way this Saturday!

October 22, 2019 – LCEC will be holding its 8th Annual LCEC Goblin Gallop 5K to benefit the United Way THIS Saturday, October 26, 2019. Time is running out to register before the price increases on the day of the race! The 5K Run/Walk and Kids Fun Run will be held at Jaycee Park in Cape Coral, Florida. Registration/check-in begins at 7 a.m. and the race starts at 7:30 a.m. The Kids Fun Run will immediately follow the 5K. Advance registration is $25 for ages 18 and over ($30 day of), $20 for ages 13-17 ($30 day of), and $15 for the Kids Fun Run for ages 12 and under. Last year’s event raised over $1,000 for United Way of Lee, Hendry, and Glades Counties with more than 100 runners, walkers, volunteers and supporters attending. For race and sponsorship information, visit, email or call 239-656-2380.

At LCEC, giving back to our community is a core value. LCEC holds an annual United Way Campaign which includes corporate donations, employee donation pledges, and monies collected through various LCEC fundraising events. All proceeds are donated to United Way who support a local service network of 96 agencies and over 260 programs that create positive change.

New LCEC chief executive officer appointed

October 18, 2019 – After a well thought out selection process, the LCEC Board of Trustees appointed Denise Vidal to the role of executive vice president and chief executive officer at their Board meeting yesterday. “I am honored by the Board’s confidence in me. I couldn’t ask for a better team. With the help of co-workers and the Trustees we will continue to serve our members responsibly,” said Vidal.

Having worked for LCEC in a variety of departments and leadership roles including chief financial officer (CFO), Vidal has a broad understanding and knowledge of the LCEC business model, the utility industry, and the environment in which LCEC operates. She has an impressive track record for cultivating relationships and maintaining financial strength while always supporting the LCEC mission to deliver reliable electricity, competitive rates, and quality service. The Board welcomes Denise to the role and wishes her every success when she moves from her CFO role to the top leadership position on December 1, 2019.

The selection of Vidal is the result of a thorough review process and consideration of the qualifications needed to serve employee and member best interests. “Vidal has vast experience and knowledge of the LCEC business and is a great fit for the leadership competencies that were evaluated as part of the selection process; strategic vision, business acumen, integrity, value-driven decision-making, leading by example, and corporate stewardship. We are excited that she accepted the position,” said Board President, Russell Priddy.

Dennie Hamilton recently announced his November retirement so that he can enjoy the next chapter of his life. “He has been a remarkable leader and responsible for leading the organization throughout his distinguished twelve-year tenure as CEO,” said Priddy. “We are indebted to Dennie for greatly advancing our ability to adapt to change, advancing our integrated business planning process, and serving as a champion for living the LCEC values and giving back to the community.”

Happy National Cooperative Month from LCEC

October 15, 2019 – Every October, cooperatives are recognized and celebrated for the qualities that make their business model unique. Electric cooperatives share a common set of principles and values which benefit the cooperative and consumers alike. The Seven Cooperative Principles for electric cooperatives include: Voluntary and Open Membership, Democratic Member Control, Members’ Economic Participation, Autonomy and Independence, Education, Training, and Information, Cooperation among Cooperatives, and Concern for Community.

National Cooperative Month celebrates the fact that electric cooperatives:
• Employ more than 68,200 Americans, support 97,600 contractors, and 170,900 suppliers
• Account for 42 percent of the nation’s distribution lines and cover 56 percent of the nation’s land mass
• Power more than 20 million homes, schools, and businesses in 47 states
• Generate more than $22 billion in taxes
• Invest $12 billion annually in local economies
• Provide electricity generated by renewable energy sources

Electric cooperatives are governed by a Board of Trustees elected from the ranks of the members. The Board has direct oversight of the policies, finances, and employees who operate LCEC on a day-to-day basis. At LCEC, we have 375+ employees working with one common goal in mind…to serve customers. Since 1940, our focus has been on delivering reliable electricity and quality service at a reasonable rate.

Please join us in celebrating October as National Cooperative Month! And to our LCEC customers, we are proud and thankful to be YOUR cooperative!

LCEC CEO Announces Retirement

October 10, 2019 – Earlier this week, Executive Vice President and CEO, Dennie Hamilton announced that he will retire from LCEC at the end of November after leading the not-for-profit electric cooperative since 2007. “Dennie played a vital part in leading the LCEC organization through critical change and continuous improvement. We are proud of all that LCEC has accomplished under his leadership,” said LCEC Board of Trustee President Russell Priddy. “In particular, it was Dennie’s tenacity for ensuring the best interest of LCEC members and forward thinking that led to multiple successful franchise agreements with local government bodies, competitive rates, quality service, improved reliability, and a complete replacement of the company’s technology systems.”

LCEC customers have not experienced a rate increase in twelve years and rates were reduced five times under Hamilton’s guidance. LCEC earned multiple prestigious awards, countless accolades, and the cooperative was able to return millions in equity to members thanks to the strategic direction he provided.

Hamilton also served in leadership roles for local, state, and national organizations such as the Florida Reliability Coordinating Council, the North American Reliability Corporation, the Southwest Florida Community Foundation, the Southwest Florida Economic Development Alliance, Healthy Lee, and the Foundation of Lee County Public Schools. “While we share Dennie’s excitement for enjoying retirement and the next chapter of his life, there is never a good time to lose a good person. We respect Dennie’s decision to retire and acknowledge that he will be missed,” said Priddy.

The LCEC Board of Trustees has developed a replacement strategy. Until a successor is announced, the current leadership team and employees will continue to operate the organization.

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