Concern for Community

Cooperative Principles in Action

(February 9, 2024) — MLEC put Co-op Principle Number 7, Concern for Community, into practice by giving $2,250 to the McEwen High School football team. MLEC Board Directors David Daniel, Larry Mayberry, Andy Porch and Jessie Wallace made the contribution to purchase gym equipment for the football program.

Pictured above: MLEC Board Director Andy Porch (left) presented the funds to team representative Charlie Gill (right).

TVA Lifts Curtailment

MLEC Members May Continue Normal Practices

(January 17, 2024) — Meriwether Lewis Electric Cooperative members may resume regular routines as the Tennessee Valley Authority has ended voluntary curtailments for electricity use. With the help of members, TVA navigated a new all-time peak at 8:00 a.m. of approximately 34,500 MW during frigid temperatures.

“We greatly appreciate your assistance in managing demand through this extreme winter weather event,” said President and CEO Keith Carnahan. “TVA was able to maintain a reliable power system and provide electricity without disruption thanks to members limiting their load.”

MLEC will continue to monitor temperatures and loads throughout the day. However, the need for additional curtailment is considered low.

Since Tuesday, the TVA service area, which includes MLEC, was placed under guidelines to voluntarily limit electrical use. These included lowering thermostats, avoiding large appliance use during peak hours and unplugging or turning off unnecessary devices. As a customer of TVA power, MLEC was required to issue the guidelines to members, which have since been lifted.

As frigid temperatures continue, MLEC wants to remind members of safe and energy efficient practices. Visit www.mlec.com to learn more about keeping your home warm while managing your power bill.

TVA Issues Public Curtailments

MLEC Shares Guidelines for Members

(January 16, 2024– Centerville, TN)Extreme cold temperatures combined with energy demands across the Tennessee Valley Authority service territory have caused TVA to implement public curtailments starting at 1:00 p.m. Meriwether Lewis Electric Cooperative is taking steps in-house to conserve energy and asks members to follow TVA’s request to help maintain a stable power grid.

Until further notice, residents are asked to reduce power consumption by delaying the use of large appliances such as dishwashers, washing machines and electric dryers during the peak hours (6 AM to 10 AM). Also, turn off unnecessary devices and lights, and when possible, adjust thermostats down a degree or two.

MLEC is a local electric distribution cooperative that purchases its power from TVA. As part of the agreement, MLEC is required to support TVA in electric load curtailments to maintain reliability during rare circumstances such as winter weather events.

“MLEC apologizes for this inconvenience to members,” said MLEC President and CEO Keith Carnahan. “We are taking every step in-house to comply with TVA and hope members follow as well to ensure a reliable power grid for all members.”

During frigid temperatures, MLEC also understands the importance of safety while following curtailment guidelines. We encourage members to check on elderly or disabled neighbors to ensure they remain warm throughout the night. For other safety tips and energy efficiency questions, visit www.mlec.com.

Area Faces Snow and Frigid Temperatures

MLEC Shares Tips on Staying Warm Efficiently

(January 15, 2024) — Several inches of snow and frigid temperatures have covered the Meriwether Lewis Electric Cooperative service area. The utility understands members are looking to stay warm but also concerned about energy bills and safety. From heat pump tips to simple practices around the home, MLEC has information to help:

  1. Set your thermostat to 68 degrees to warm your home and better manage energy consumption, which has a direct impact on power bills. Also, make sure thermostat batteries are fresh or have replacements on hand.
  2. Keep all doors and registers open inside the home. Closed areas make your unit work harder and can make your home colder.
  3. Can you see daylight through the door threshold? Place a rolled-up towel in those cracks to keep cold air from sneaking inside.
  4. With extremely cold temperatures, leave your indoor faucets dripping to help avoid busted pipes.
  5. If the sun is shining, take advantage of the radiant heat and open your curtains or blinds. Once the sun goes down, close them for an insulation barrier.
  6. Check the batteries of carbon monoxide detectors if utilizing gas heat.
  7. If you need to do chores, try to avoid using large appliances (oven, stove, clothes dryer) during the coldest points of the day. This helps the reliability of the overall power grid.
  8. If you have a heat pump and temperatures drop below 30 degrees, try switching from auxiliary heat to emergency heat mode. This will help limit extended unit run times and ensure warm air is pushed into the home.

Energy efficiency and safety remain a top priority for MLEC, especially during winter weather events. Stay warm by utilizing these tips in your home while also enjoying the snow. For more information on energy efficiency, visit www.mlec.com/ways-to-save.

If you are experiencing an outage, please contact your local MLEC office or call 1-888-879-6038 to report. If you are an MLConnect customer and your power has returned but your Internet has not, please call your local office and section Option 3 for MLConnect, then Option 2 for technical support.

Power Outage – December 1, 2023

All of Perry County and portions of Hickman and Humphreys Affected

(November 30, 2023) — All Meriwether Lewis Electric Cooperative members in Perry County, the Pleasantville area of Hickman County, and Cuba Landing in Humphreys County will experience a power interruption at 11 p.m. on Friday, December 1. Small, connected locations may also be involved. The outage is expected to last less than an hour but is crucial to service.

The outage is required quickly so that MLEC can conduct essential repairs and ensure reliability for the area. MLEC crews will work with the Tennessee Valley Authority to isolate the location for safety and efficiency.

“We appreciate everyone’s patience and support in helping us maintain the power system to the highest standards,” says MLEC Vice President of Engineering and Operations Ed Greenwell. “Crews will work as quickly and safely as possible to keep the outage time to a minimum.”

Should anyone have concerns, please contact your local MLEC office for further information.

MLEC is a member-owned, not-for-profit electric utility serving more than 35,000 meters in Hickman, Houston, Humphreys, Lewis, and Perry counties. We connect our communities to a better quality of life through power, broadband, and committed service. Learn more at www.mlec.com/about-mlec.

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MLEC Continues Trimming

Houston and Humphreys County Vegetation Management Update

(November 15, 2023) Meriwether Lewis Electric Cooperative’s commitment to reliable, affordable and safe electricity continues as vegetation management moves forward in Houston and Humphreys County.

Right of way trimming will begin in Humphreys County in December with an estimated completion time of 12 to 18 months. Crews will focus on the southern parts of New Johnsonville and will then target Highway 70, Scepter Road, Dry Creek Road, Highway 13 North and Highway 231.

In Houston County, trimming is expected to be completed by early next year. Vegetation crews are currently working on areas of Highway 13 South, Bateman Branch, Salmon Branch and Highway 231. RW Tree Service, Gunnison Tree and Trees’ LLC are conducting the work.

MLEC’s balanced program uses a variety of approved, environmentally sound methods.  This includes trimming, spraying and removal, if needed, to maintain a clearance of 20 feet on each side of the power line from an individual home or business all the way to the substation. Trimming practices are in accordance with the International Society of Arboriculture and the National Arbor Day Foundation recommended guidelines and standards for good tree health.

“We understand tree trimming is a sensitive issue, but it is also vital to keeping our members’ lights on, preventing accidents and controlling costly outages and equipment repair,” says MLEC President and CEO Keith Carnahan. “MLEC works with our members to keep the lines of communication open and strike a balance between vegetation and service.”


MLEC is a member-owned, not-for-profit electric utility that serves more than 34,500 meters in Hickman, Houston, Humphreys, Lewis and Perry counties. We are your source for power and broadband and help build brighter futures for the communities we serve. Learn more at www.mlec.com/about-mlec.

MLEC Hosts Annual Meeting

Perry County members join MLEC at Member Night

(November 2, 2023) —Meriwether Lewis Electric Cooperative hosted its 84th annual meeting at the 2023 Perry County Member Night on October 30 at Perry County High School.

Perry County Director Tommy Graham welcomed members to start the festivities. John Lee Williams led the Pledge of Allegiance and Josh Hardin of Linden Church of Christ led the innovation. John Carroll served as the temporary chairman and conducted the district’s Member Night portion of the informational meeting. The event served as an opportunity for members to see MLEC’s 2023 Annual Report video, which highlighted service commitments, progress over the past year, reliability upgrade plans, community involvement, and a Meriwether Lewis Connect update.

MLEC then called to order its 84th Annual Meeting directly after the Member Night. Vice-President of Administrative Services and CFO Blake Harper presented an annual report to members that outlined the current state of the cooperative.

The event also served as an opportunity to celebrate local Perry County students. MLEC poster contest winners received their prizes, and MLEC recognized Washington Youth Tour delegate Wyatt Carroll.

Door prize winners were Jason Richardson – one-year membership to the Nashville Zoo; Josh Hardin– bluetooth speaker; Don Westveer– iRobot roomba vacuum/sweeper; Mary Kilpatrick– Blackstone electric grill; Dean Heady– outdoor smokeless firepit; and Jerry Beasley– 50-inch smart TV donated by MLConnect. All meeting attendees received an MLEC weather station.

“All of us at Meriwether Lewis thank the members for attending and participating in our Perry County Member Night and MLEC’s Annual Meeting,” said MLEC President and CEO Keith Carnahan. “It is an honor to serve you with power and broadband. Every day we strive to deliver the essential services that make your life more comfortable.”


MLEC is a member-owned, not-for-profit electric utility that serves more than 34,500 meters in Hickman, Houston, Humphreys, Lewis and Perry counties. We are your source for power and broadband and help build brighter futures for the communities we serve. Learn more at www.mlec.com/about-mlec.

MLEC Honors Houston County Educators

Teacher of the Year Winners Recognized for Their Service

(July 21, 2023) Meriwether Lewis Electric Cooperative presented the Houston County teachers of the year an award for their accomplishments during in-service on July 17th at Houston County High School. Pictured from left to right are honorees Jennifer Glatz (Erin Elementary School), Stefanie Medders (Houston County High School), Kelly Carter (Houston County Middle School), Shelly Taylor (Tennessee Ridge Elementary School), and MLEC Member Service Representative Gina Bush.

MLConnect Adds More Wi-Fi Hotspots

New Public Access Points Installed in Houston and Lewis Counties

(July 13, 2023) – MLConnect has added two new free Wi-Fi hotspots in Houston and Lewis counties. This increases the provider’s public broadband accessibility to 12 locations across the five-county service area.

The Houston County hotspot is in Stewart at the Magnolia Community Center at 6335 Whiteoak Road. In Lewis County, Wi-Fi is now available at the Buffalo River Public Access Point in Hohenwald. The additions ensure fast, reliable, internet for members utilizing public facilities. The Buffalo River Public Access Point also has poor cellular reception, so the hotspot will enable Wi-Fi calling or texting in the event of emergencies. 

MLEC and MLConnect are committed to helping our area grow by providing innovative ways to serve our members. As a result, we provide free Wi-Fi hotspots to keep our members connected. Those traveling to these areas can find new hotspot locations as well as the 10 existing access points at www.mlec.com/my-mlec-wifi

Click here to view a direct map of hotspot locations.


MLEC is a member-owned, not-for-profit electric utility serving more than 35,000 meters in Hickman, Houston, Humphreys, Lewis and Perry counties. We connect our communities to a better quality of life through power, broadband and committed service. Learn more at www.mlec.com/about-mlec.

Concern for Community

​MLEC Contributes Funding to City and County Emergency Services

(July 11, 2023) — Meriwether Lewis Electric Cooperative continues its community support by contributing $2,500 to local organizations in Hickman County.

Each year, MLEC Board Directors support non-profits, civic groups or volunteer efforts that directly impact our members. This year, Hickman County Directors Johnnie Ruth Elrod, Zack Hutchens and Wayne Qualls donated $1,250 to the Centerville Volunteer Fire Department as well as the Hickman County Rescue Squad.

On June 16th, Board directors met with fire and rescue leaders to present the donations. District Manager Matthew Chessor also joined board directors in presenting the funds.

“As an electric cooperative, supporting local organizations is one of many responsibilities we have to support our members,” MLEC CEO and President Keith Carnahan said. “Through these funds, it is MLEC’s hope that we move our communities forward by contributing to the operations of fire and rescue services.”

The donations are a part of MLEC’s seven cooperative principles. One of those is “Concern for Community” which calls for MLEC to work towards the sustainable development of their communities through policies supported by the membership. The contributions are one of many examples of how board directors and co-op employees practice this belief.

Click images below for a better view!

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Pictured from left to right: MLEC District Manager Matthew Chessor, MLEC Directors Dr. Zack Hutchens and Wayne Qualls; Rescue Squad Chief Toby Warren, and Operation Officer Clyde Sunder; and MLEC Director Johnnie Ruth Elrod.

Pictured from left to right: MLEC District Manager Matthew Chessor, MLEC Directors Dr. Zack Hutchens and Wayne Qualls; Rescue Squad Chief Toby Warren, and Operation Officer Clyde Sunder; and MLEC Director Johnnie Ruth Elrod.

Pictured from left to right: MLEC Directors Wayne Qualls and Johnnie Ruth Elrod; Centerville Firefighters Charles Horner, Marvin Dorton, Kyle Labore, Jason Dotson, Centerville Fire Captain Greg Johnston and granddaughter Tinslee, and Firefighter McKale Baltz; MLEC Director Dr. Zack Hutchens, and District Manager Matthew Chessor.

Pictured from left to right: MLEC Directors Wayne Qualls and Johnnie Ruth Elrod; Centerville Firefighters Charles Horner, Marvin Dorton, Kyle Labore, Jason Dotson, Centerville Fire Captain Greg Johnston and granddaughter Tinslee, and Firefighter McKale Baltz; MLEC Director Dr. Zack Hutchens, and District Manager Matthew Chessor.

Board directors representing Houston, Humphreys, Lewis and Perry Counties also support their members through similar contributions.


MLEC is a member-owned, not-for-profit electric utility serving more than 35,000 meters in Hickman, Houston, Humphreys, Lewis and Perry counties. We connect our communities to a better quality of life through power, broadband and committed service. Learn more at www.mlec.com.

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