Energy Bill Explanation

Understanding Your Electric Bill

If you have any questions or need assistance, please call Clearwater-Polk Electric's office at 218-694-6241 or toll-free 1-888-694-3833. We are here to help!

  1. Bill print statement date &Your Clearwater-Polk Elec. account number

2.  Total due on your electric account.

3.  Past due notifications printed here.

4.  Meter and usage information.

5.  Kilowatt-hour usage history chart – the graph will include your main meter and, when applicable, your heat meter. For more than one heat meter on an account, please view this information through your online SmartHub® account. At the bottom, the year to year comparison is for the light meter usage and heat meter usage (when applicable).   

6.  Current billing information and charges.  Past due amounts will also be indicated when applicable.

7.  The Message Box displays co-op messages and notifications to members.  Please note this section each month to keep informed of special dates, upcoming events and important messages from Clearwater-Polk.

8.  SmartHub® - online access to view, pay and manage your electric account 24/7.

9.  Payment due date & bank draft date for total amount

A member’s monthly energy bill is comprised of the facility charge, billable rate, usage, demand and miscellaneous items that are dependent per individual account.  Let's try to sort them out!

Clearwater-Polk uses an Automatic Meter Reading software to obtain readings and demands from your meter each month. The data is downloaded to the billing software on the last day of the month.

Meter Kwh charges are dependent of the rate schedule that applies to each member’s individual billing design requirements

Click here to view Clearwater-Polk's Energy Rate Schedule

All active electric services require equipment and continued maintenance in order to provide your home or business with safe reliable power and lighting.  This equipment includes but is not limited to, poles, transformers, wire, guy guards, meters, security lights.  Examples of other unavoidable necessary expenses to install and maintain our distribution lines include digger trucks, bucket trucks, trenchers, and right-of-way clearing equipment. The Board of Directors reviews the facility charge on a regular basis to treat every member in the fairest, most equitable way possible.  Large utilities may have a smaller facility charge as they have many more services per mile of line who contribute to the fixed costs.  For example, Investor-owned utilities average 35 services per mile and collect $62,665 in revenue.  Clearwater-Polk averages 3 members per mile of line and collect approximately $4,300.

This charge is only applicable during billing for members that have a heat meter. This fee helps with the recovery costs of extra heat meters, ripple receivers, load management equipment, and for the software and hardware to provide an efficient load management system.

The PCA was enacted in June 2006 to reflect the increases or decreases each month in the cost of purchased power from our wholesale power supplier, Minnkota Power.  Instead of having a full rate increase, the power cost adjustment was implemented.  A base rate was determined in 2005, which was the average monthly power cost per Kwh for that year.  The cost of power divided by the number of Kwh purchased each month is calculated and deducted from the base rate to determine the PCA multiplication factor.  This factor is then taken by the number of main Kwh on your bill.  The result is either an increase or decrease (which does really happen) in the Power Cost Adjustment.

Adjustments are made to either correct a bill or to apply a credit to a bill. Examples would be charges added for collection fees, NSF checks, billing adjustments or a credit applied for rebates, winning our bank draft monthly drawing or winning a draw prize at annual meeting.

Operation Round-Up began in 1997.  Those members who participate allow their bill to be round up to the nearest dollar.  These collected amounts are set up in a trust that is distributed to not-for-profit organizations that apply for donations.  These non-profit organizations are groups in Clearwater-Polk's service territory who submit an application to a three-member board of directors that meet semi-annually to disburse money from the trust.  As of the June of 2022, Clearwater-Polk members have contributed over $462,235.62 to local non-profit organizations.  

Sales Tax is applied to the Facility Charge, PCA (Power Cost Adjustment), Demand and to all Energy charges except those that are not taxable.  If you are a consumer that should not be charged sales tax, please contact our office and we'll send out a non-taxable form for you to return to us.  Residential electric heat during the months of October 15th to April 15th is not taxable.  If your electric heat is your main source of heat for the cold months, please contact our office to complete the necessary paperwork to change your account to non-taxable for this period.