SECTION 1.01. ELIGIBILITY.
Any natural person, firm, association, corporation, cooperative, business trust, partnership, federal, state or local government, or departments, agencies or any other political subdivision thereof (each hereinafter referred to as “person,” “applicant,” “him” or “his”) shall be eligible to become a member of, and, at one or more premises owned or directly occupied or used by him, to receive electric service from Southwest Tennessee Electric Membership Corporation (hereinafter called the “Cooperative”). No person shall hold more than one membership in the Cooperative.
SECTION 1.02. APPLICATION FOR MEMBERSHIP; RENEWAL OF PRIOR APPLICATION.
Application for Membership — wherein the applicant shall agree to purchase electric power and energy from the Cooperative and to be bound by and to comply with all of the other provisions of the Cooperative’s Articles of Incorporation and Bylaws, and all rules, regulations, rate classifications and rate schedules established pursuant thereto, as all the same then exist or may thereafter be adopted or amended (the obligations embraced by such agreement being hereinafter called “membership obligations”) — shall be made in writing on such form as is provided therefore by the Cooperative. With respect to any particular classification of service for which the Board of Directors shall require it, such application shall be accompanied by a supplemental contract, executed by the applicant on such form as is provided therefor by the Cooperative. The membership application shall be accompanied by the membership fee provided for in Section 1.03 (together with any service security deposit, service connection deposit or fee, facilities extension deposit, or contribution in aid of construction that may be required by the Cooperative), which fee (and such service security deposit, service connection deposit or fee, facilities extension deposit, or contribution in aid of construction, if any) shall be refunded in the event the application is not approved. Any former member of the Cooperative may, by the sole act of paying a new membership fee and any outstanding account plus accrued interest thereon at the Tennessee legal rate on judgments in effect when such account first became overdue, compounded annually (together with any service security deposit, service connection deposit or fee, facilities extension deposit, or contribution in aid of construction that may be required by the Cooperative), renew and reactivate any prior application for membership to the same effect as though the application had been newly made on the date of such payment.
SECTION 1.03. MEMBERSHIP FEE; SERVICE SECURITY AND FACILITY EXTENSION DEPOSITS; CONTRIBUTION IN AID OF CONSTRUCTION.
The membership fee shall be as fixed from time to time by the Board of Directors. The membership fee (together with any service security deposit, or service connection deposit or fee, facilities extension deposit, or contribution in aid of construction, or any combination thereof, if required by the Cooperative) shall entitle the member to one service connection. A service connection deposit or fee, in such amount as shall be prescribed by the Cooperative (together with a service security deposit, a facilities extension deposit or a contribution in aid of construction, if required by the Cooperative), shall be paid by the member for each additional service connection requested by him.
SECTION 1.04. JOINT MEMBERSHIP.
A husband and wife, by specifically so requesting in writing, may be accepted into joint membership or, if one of them is already a member, may automatically convert such membership into a joint membership. The words “member,” “applicant,” “person,” “his” and “him,” as used in these Bylaws, shall include a husband and wife applying for or holding a joint membership, unless otherwise clearly distinguished in the text; and all provisions relating to the rights, powers, terms, conditions, obligations, responsibilities and liabilities of membership shall apply equally, severally and jointly to them. Without limiting the generality of the foregoing;
(a) the presence at a meeting of either or both shall constitute the presence of one member and a joint waiver of notice of the meeting;
(b) the vote of either or both shall constitute, respectively, one joint vote;
(c) notice to, or waiver of notice signed by, either or both shall constitute, respectively, a joint notice or waiver of notice;
(d) suspension or termination in any manner of either shall constitute suspension or termination of the joint membership;
(e) either, but not both concurrently, shall be eligible to serve as a Director of the Cooperative, but only if both meet the qualifications required therefore; and
(f) neither will be permitted to have any additional service connections except through their one joint membership unless such already existed as an individual membership prior to creation of the joint membership.
SECTION 1.05. ACCEPTANCE INTO MEMBERSHIP.
Upon complying with the requirements set forth in Section 1.02, any applicants shall automatically become a member on the date of his connection for the electric service; PROVIDED, the Board of Directors may by resolution deny an application and refuse to extend service upon its determination that the applicant is not willing or is not able to satisfy and abide by the Cooperative’s terms and conditions of membership or that such application should be denied for other good cause.
SECTION 1.06. SERVICE TO NON-MEMBERS.
The Cooperative shall render service to its members only; provided, however, that service may be rendered to governmental agencies and political subdivisions and to other persons not in excess of fifteen per centum (15%) of the number of its members.
SECTION 1.07. EXCESS PAYMENTS TO BE CREDITED AS MEMBER FURNISHED CAPITAL.
All amounts received and receivable from the furnishing of electric energy to members and non-members in excess of operating costs and expenses properly chargeable against the furnishing of electric energy are, at the moment of receipt by the Cooperative, received with the understanding that such amounts are furnished by members and non-members alike as capital as provided in Section 9.03 of these Bylaws.
SECTION 1.08. PURCHASE OF ELECTRIC POWER AND ENERGY; POWER PRODUCTION BY MEMBER; APPLICATION OF PAYMENTS TO ALL ACCOUNTS.
The Cooperative shall use reasonable diligent efforts to furnish its members with adequate and dependable electric service, although it cannot and therefore does not guarantee a continuous and uninterrupted supply thereof; and each member, for so long as such premises are owned or directly occupied or used by him, shall purchase from the Cooperative all central station electric power and energy purchased for use on all premises to which electric service has been furnished by the Cooperative pursuant to his membership, unless and except to the extent that the Board of Directors may in writing waive such requirement, and shall pay therefore at the times, and in accordance with the rules, regulations, and rate schedules (including any monthly minimum amount that may be charged without regard to the amount of electric power and energy actually used) established by the Board of Directors and, if in effect, in accordance with the provisions of any supplemental contract that may have been entered into. Production or use of electric energy on such premises, regardless of the source thereof, by means of facilities which shall be interconnected with Cooperative facilities, shall be subject to appropriate regulations as shall be fixed from time to time by the Cooperative. Each member shall also pay all other amounts owed by him to the Cooperative as and when they become due and payable. When the member has more than one service connection from the Cooperative, any payment by him for service from the Cooperative shall be deemed to be allocated and credited on a pro rata basis to his outstanding accounts for all such service connections, notwithstanding that the Cooperative’s actual accounting procedures do not reflect such allocation and proration.
SECTION 1.09. WIRING.
Service to any person may in the discretion of the Board of Directors be conditioned upon such person furnishing to the Cooperative the certificate of a reputable inspector stating that the wiring of the premises served or to be served complies with all local regulations and is in accordance with the latest rules and regulations of the National Electrical Code of the National Board of Fire Underwriters for the installing of electric wire, apparatus, and appliances, and is in accordance with the wiring specifications prescribed by the Rural Electrification Administration. The requirement or waiver of such a certificate, however, or the supplying of service on the basis thereof, shall not subject the Cooperative to liability to any member or other person for any damages or injuries sustained by reason of defects existing in the wiring of such premises.
Each member shall make available to the Cooperative a suitable site, as determined by the Cooperative, whereon to place the Cooperative’s physical facilities for the furnishing and metering of electric service and shall permit the Cooperative’s authorized employees, agents and independent contractors to have access thereto, safely and without interference from hostile dogs or any other hostile source, for meter reading and bill collecting and for inspection, maintenance, replacement, relocation, repair or disconnection of such facilities at all reasonable times. As part of the consideration for such service, each member shall be the Cooperative’s bailee of such facilities and shall accordingly desist from interfering with, impairing the operation of or causing damage to such facilities, and shall use his best efforts to prevent others from so doing. Each member shall also provide such protective devices to his premises, apparatuses or meter base as the Cooperative shall from time to time require in order to protect the Cooperative’s physical facilities and their operation and to prevent any interference with or damage to such facilities. In the event such facilities are interfered with, impaired in their operation, or damaged by the member, or by any other person when the member’s reasonable care and surveillance should have prevented such, the member shall indemnify the Cooperative and its employees, agents and independent contractors against death, injury, loss or damage resulting therefrom, including, but not limited to, the Cooperative’s cost of repairing, replacing or relocating any such facilities and its loss, if any, of revenues resulting from the failure or defective functioning of its metering equipment. The Cooperative shall, however, in accordance with its applicable service rules and regulations, indemnify the member for any overcharges for service that may result from a malfunctioning of its metering equipment or any error occurring in the Cooperative’s billing procedures. In no event shall the responsibility of the Cooperative for furnishing electric service extend beyond the point of delivery.
SECTION 1.10. MEMBER TO GRANT EASEMENTS TO COOPERATIVE AND TO PARTICIPATE IN REQUIRED COOPERATIVE LOAD MANAGEMENT PROGRAMS.
Each member shall, upon being requested so to do by the Cooperative, execute and deliver to the Cooperative grants of easement or right-of-way over, on and under such lands owned or leased by or mortgaged to the member, and in accordance with such reasonable terms and conditions, as the Cooperative shall require for the furnishing of electric service to him or other members or for the construction, operation, maintenance or relocation of the Cooperative’s electric facilities. Each member shall participate in any required program that may be established by the Cooperative to enhance load management, more efficiently to utilize or conserve electric energy or to conduct load research.