Business Lighting Rebate Program

Southwest Electric Cooperative is offering a Business Lighting Rebate to our commercial, industrial, educational and agricultural members through the Take Control & Save energy efficiency program.

Lighting is a critical component of every business. Employees must be able to see to safely perform their jobs, and floor space should be aesthetically pleasing to encourage sales.

You may be surprised to learn, lighting can be the largest user of electricity for a business. Lighting systems can produce large amounts of heat as well, and are typically the largest source of waste heat inside commercial buildings. Energy efficient lighting, such as compact fluorescent bulbs and LED's, add less heat than inefficient lighting. By decreasing internal heat gain, efficient lighting also reduces a building's cooling requirements.

Your business could be spending more than needed to effectively light your facilities. Significant cost savings can be achieved with energy efficiency improvements, and due to continually improving technology, lighting usually provides the highest return on investment of major upgrades.

With good design, lighting energy use in most buildings can be cut in half while maintaining or improving lighting quality. Such designs typically pay for themselves in energy savings alone within a few years, and they offer more benefits in terms of the potential for smaller and less costly cooling systems and more productive work environments.

Do you qualify?

Members in good standing with the Cooperative and with greater than 10 bulbs or fixtures at their installation site will qualify. The rebate amount will be determined prior to installation and is limited to $30,000 per member, per year.

How do you participate?

For existing facilities, a walk through of your facility must be conducted by Southwest Electric Cooperative to audit the existing lighting inventory.

For new construction, please contact the cooperative before you purchase the lighting; this is done for two reasons: one, to ensure the lighting you install will qualify for a rebate; two, it allows you to know how much your rebate will be for your budgeting purposes.

Work with the cooperative to fill out the lighting rebate application; provided at the time of the audit.

Pre-approval is required before you purchase and install the lighting equipment. Once the cooperative approves the proposed lighting, you may install the approved lighting and equipment.

After installation, the cooperative will perform another walk through audit to verify the lighting installation. The lighting specification sheets and the receipts will need to accompany the completed rebate application.

Rebate amounts will vary depending upon how much energy is saved when you replace the existing lighting.

To get your Business Lighting Rebate started please email Nick Seiner or call 800.262.0326

Rural Missouri

Rural Missouri is the statewide publication of Missouri’s electric cooperatives. Each month this entertaining and informative tabloid is delivered to more than 500,000 rural homes in Missouri. Along with lively features and award-winning photography, Missouri’s electric co-op members receive up-to-date information about the cooperative electric utility industry. These articles, along with editorials, commentary and the information contained on cooperative local pages ensures members are better informed about the business they own. In addition, Rural Missouri advertising offers businesses a direct line to rural consumers. Read the Rural Missouri Magazine from your computer. Click on the cover page to the right or any link below to start browsing the digital version of Rural Missouri. Backpage and Light Line Issues containing information specifically for Southwest Electric members: Archived editions of the entire Rural Missouri Magazine, in digital format, can be found by clicking here.

Rural Missouri
PO Box 1645
Jefferson City, MO 65102
573-635-6857 x3423
Submissions click here. Staff contact information click here.

Apply For Service

New construction: if you are needing to have a new service built in please contact our Engineering Department at 800-262-0326. Existing service: to request for an existing service to be transferred or connected simply follow the steps below:

To ensure the correct service is transferred/connected, please provide one of the following when applying:

  • A meter number (the serial number on the face of the meter),
  • A pole location number (the metal tag on the pole) or
  • The physical/service address.

*Fees which may be required when applying for service:

  • $20 set up fee for each meter you are requesting service at.
  • $20 connect fee (not applicable if transferring existing service).
  • Security deposit, will be determined based on a utility credit check obtained through SWEC’s online utility exchange service along with the electric usage history at the location in which service is being requested.
  • $20 auto light installation fee (if requested).

New construction? If you are needing to have a new service built in please contact our Engineering Department at 800-262-0326.


Youth Programs

Youth Tour
"The trip of a lifetime"

youth tour photos

Southwest Electric Cooperative (SWEC) is proud to be one of the many electric cooperatives in Missouri to sponsor an essay & interview contest to select two high school Juniors for the annual Electric Cooperative Youth Tour to Washington, D.C. These fortunate students represent SWEC, along with about 100 other students from around Missouri, on an all expense paid tour of the nation's capital. They tour museums, visit America's most cherished monuments, and even meet their elected officials; while learning about electric cooperatives and their role in the community.

The 2016 Youth Tour contest has come to a close. Thank you to all the students who entered an essay and participated in the interviews. The winners have been chosen! Ryan Bake from Pleasant Hope High School and Amanda Shields from Bolivar High School took the two Youth Tour spots with Riley Williams from Strafford High School and Erica Vaughn from Bolivar High School grabbing the CYCLE spots! Congratulations to our winners!

This year's trip is scheduled for June 10 - 16. The CYCLE trip is set for July 20 - 22; see below for more information on the CYCLE program.

Contest Rules

Eligibility - This contest is open to any current high school Junior residing or attending school within SWEC's service territory. Parents of the student do not have to be a member of the Cooperative. Please complete the Youth Tour Cover Letter and submit with your essay. Click here for the Cover Letter.

2016 Essay Topic - One of the goals of the Electric Cooperative Youth Tour is to develop future leaders. What skills do you believe make a leader and how do you view yourself as a leader?

Essay Requirements  - Each contestant should write and submit a typewritten, 500-word minimum, essay on the topic provided above. The deadline to submit an essay was Friday, March 25.

Finalist Judging/Interviews - Essays are read by impartial judges, and the top 10 semi-finalists will be selected. Essay judging is based on knowledge of the subject, originality, grammer and neatness. These semi-finalists will then be scheduled for an interview with a panel of three judges. Once the interviews are completed the two Youth Tour winners and two CYCLE winners will be selected.

For more information and to submit your essay:

Nick Seiner, Youth Tour coordinator
PO Box 150
Bolivar, MO 65613
417.326.5244 or 800.262.0326

Check out these Youth Tour videos on YouTube:

Investing in Tomorrows Leaders Video

2015 Youth Tour Video
2014 Youth Tour Video
2013 Youth Tour Video
2012 Youth Tour Video
2011 Youth Tour Video
2010 Youth Tour Video
2009 Youth Tour Video

Youth Tour Resources

Need help with your essay? Check out these Youth Tour resources. Also, be sure to check out National Rural Electric Cooperative Association's Youth Tour site.

The National Rural Electric Cooperative Association represents nearly 1,000 electric cooperatives nationwide and sponsors the Youth Tour program nationwide.

Check out NRECA's Youth Tour site.

Members First looks at how Southwest views our members and what benefits there are to being a member.

The Rural Utilities Service replaced the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Rural Electrification Administration.

Associated Electric Cooperative in Springfield, Missouri recounts its history.

The National Cooperative Business Association is a national trade association representing cooperatives.

The Electric Power Research Institute is a scientific and research organization funded in part by America's rural electric cooperatives.

Americans for Balanced Energy Choices (ABEC) is a national, not-for-profit organization designed to educate community leaders about America's growing demand for electricity.

2015 Youth Tour Winners at the United States Capitol Building

From left: Cassidy Elliott of Morrisville & Marylen Arciniegas, of Pleasant Hope



(Cooperative Youth Conference and Leadership Experience)

The CYCLE program is an award winning, three day conference held at our state capital in Jefferson City in July. It brings in some of the brightest young leaders from across Missouri - around 125 students. The focus is to show students more about electric cooperatives, teach leadership skills and experience Missouri state government. The program includes nationally know speakers and a day at the state Capitol. There is also time for some fun things like an outdoor barbeque and a hypnosis. The group is also divided up into smaller teams that compete in various events like the “build a cooperative” game.

Delegates for the CYCLE program are selected from the Youth Tour Essays. The two runner up entries from the Youth Tour contest are awarded the CYCLE trip. CYCLE is also an all expense paid experience for high school Juniors with the same eligibility requirements as Youth Tour.

The 2016 CYCLE program is scheduled for July 20 - 22 in Jefferson City, Missouri.

2015 CYCLE Video


2015 CYCLE winners in front of the Missouri State Capitol Building

From left: Ben Robinson of Bolivar & Emily Hinkle of Morrisville.


When you move, please notify one of our offices.  You will be billed to the final reading on the meter.  If service is being transferred, the new residents must contact the office to avoid any service interruptions.  If you move and fail to notify us you are liable for any energy used.  Please provide a forwarding address for the return of any credit that may be owed to you after your account has been closed.  Please keep us informed of any future address changes as well, so we will be able to forward your capital credit checks to your current location.

Net Metering

The Easy Connection Act passed by the Missouri Legislature in 2007 requires all Missouri utilities to offer true net metering and provide for a simplified interconnection process for consumers wanting to install a renewable energy fueled generator with a capacity of 100 kW or less behind their retail meter. Net metering under this Act is applicable only to the retail meter that the renewable generator is located directly behind. One generator cannot offset usage on multiple retail meters, even though these retail meters may be owned by the same consumer or are in the same location.

During any given month, energy from the generator is given full retail credit by SWEC up to the members monthly usage. If energy in excess of the members monthly usage is generated during the month, a credit will be applied to the excess. This credit will be at SWEC's avoided cost for the month. All credits expire if not used twelve months after they are received.

Click here to download a net metering application.

Members should consider multiple factors and ask the right questions when completing their research. To help our members make the right decisions, some informational tools are provided below.

The National Renewable Energy Labratory of the U.S. Department of Energy has created the PVWatts® Calculator which estimates the energy production and cost of energy of grid-connected photovoltaic (PV) energy system throughout the world. It allows homeowners, small building owners, installers and manufacturers to easily develop estimates of the performance of potention PV installations.

Click here to visit the PVWatts® Calculator website.

Our power supplier, Associated Electric Cooperative, has put together some helpful information and questions to consider before installing a home solar energy system, click the link below.

Considering a home solar energy system?

Can you save money by installing a solar energy system? Maybe. Depending on many factors and how fast you want to see a return on your investment. The National Renewable Energy Laboratory and the U.S. Department of Energy produced a very helpful map which shows real solar installations and their estimated payback, click the link below.

Can I save money by installing a solar energy system?

Rebates & Audits


Southwest Electric’s Take Control & Save program encourages members to become more energy conscious and purchase ENERGY STAR® equipment to help control their electric usage. All rebates are limited to “full-time” services using more than 6,000 kWh’s on an annual-basis. Rebates are available to all types of services.

Overview of all rebates:

  • Ground-source heat pump 19.1 EER (new installation) - $750 per ton
  • Ground-source heat pump 19.1 EER (replacement of existing unit) - $200 per ton
  • Floor insulation with the installation of a ground-source heat pump - up to $500
  • Mini-split (ductless) heat pump 16.5 SEER - $150 per ton
  • Dual-fuel heat pump 16.5 SEER - $150 per ton
  • ENERGY STAR® window/room air conditioner - $50
  • Heat pump water heater - $50 (must be purchased on or after July 1, 2015)
  • Energy Audit - up to $500

Details of all rebates:

Heat pump water heater

ENERGY STAR® window/room air conditioner

  • Must be ENERGY STAR® rated
  • Limit of one (1) rebate per member address
  • Submit a copy of the sales receipt with the rebate application, within 90 days of purchase
  • Click here to download the rebate form

Ground-source heat pump (GSHP)

Not sure what a ground-source heat pump is? Click here.

An on site inspection of the GSHP is required, please contact any SWEC office to schedule; preferably before the installation. To qualify for a rebate on a new GSHP, including a loop system, the following must be met (make sure your contractor is aware of the requirements before you purchase/install):

  • Must be a new ground-source heat pump with a minimum EER of 19.1
  • Must be installed to a delta T of 80 with a Manual J load calculation (this is done to ensure backup heat is rarely, if ever, needed)
  • Electric backup heat must be wired on a separate breaker from the heat pump (this is done to ensure backup heat only comes on when purposefully done so by homeowner for emergency backup only)
  • Structure must have a minimum insulation of R-38 in the ceiling and R-13 in the walls
  • Structure must be on a permanent foundation

To qualify for a rebate on the replacement of an existing GSHP the following must be met:

  • An efficiency gain of 3 EER over the old unit in addition to meeting the 19.1 EER
  • A load calculation is not required for replacement units

A maximum of 10 tons for residential and 50 tons for commercial installations will be rebated. Please note, SWEC will not rebate Direct Expansion Systems.

Basement, Crawl Space or Slab Floor Insulation with GSHP

  • Available only to members also installing a ground-source heat pump
  • Basement, crawl space or slab floor insulation in either a new or existing residence
  • Insulation should comply with Dept of Energy R-Value recommendations for basement/crawl space walls of an R-10 (example)
  • Slab floors should have a minimum of a 1” thick waterproof insulation board placed around the entire foundation and extend in from the perimeter a minimum of 24 inches horizontally under the slab (example)
  • Installation of any insulation should include any necessary vapor barriers to prevent moisture or mold issues
  • 50% of the cost for insulation measures will be rebated, up to $500 maximum

Mini-Split (ductless) Heat Pumps:

  • Heat pump must be ENERGY STAR® rated with a minimum SEER rating of 16.5
  • Cannot have electric resistance as the back up heat source

Dual-Fuel Heat Pump Rebates:

  • Heat pump must be ENERGY STAR® rated with a minimum SEER rating of 16.5
  • Propane, natural gas or fuel oil must be used as the back up heat source


For Commercial Energy Audits please contact Nick Seiner for more information.

Residential Energy Audit:

SWEC is charged $300 per audit, however, we only charge the member $100.

  • Check the heating/cooling system filter and duct work
  • Check the temperature setting on the water heater
  • Install of a hot water pipe wrap from the top of the water heater up to 10’ if accessible
  • Install of a low-flow shower head with the owner’s permission
  • Inspect of the attic and wall insulation - determine if any additional insulation is needed
  • Inspect of crawl space or basement for any energy efficiency opportunities
  • Install CFL’s if agreed to by home owner

Energy audit will be conducted by a certified energy auditor who will prepare a report of any items found that might need replaced or repaired. If the member makes corrective measures, SWEC will reimburse the member for 50% of the cost of the repairs made, with a cap of $500. Corrective measures include such items as labor and materials for insulation, building shell sealing, and interior duct sealing/insulation. Repair/replacement costs for HVAC equipment are not eligible for a rebate through the energy audit (even if recommended by auditor); please refer to our other rebates for HVAC system rebates.

LED Automatic Light

Beginning summer 2015, SWEC will begin phasing out high pressure sodium (HPS) automatic lights with new light emitting diode (LED) fixtures. Any existing HPS light which requires maintenance will be replaced with a LED fixture. Any new automatic light installations will also be a LED fixture.

While the LED fixture cost more to purchase it uses less energy and has a longer life expectancy than the HPS bulb. Over time, the energy and maintenance savings offset the purchase price and ultimately save our members money.

With the LED fixture members should notice a white light as opposed to the yellow, orange light of a HPS bulb. The LED fixture is rated at about the same lumens (brightness) as the HPS bulb while using less energy. Due to the increase in purchase price but a savings in maintenance and energy usage, SWEC is able to charge the same amount for the LED fixture as was charged for the HPS bulb.

Current charges for a LED automatic light:

  • $20 installation charge and $7 per month - with existing electric service
  • $120 installation charge and $10 per month - stand alone light requiring a transformer
  • Included in the monthly charge is the energy used by the fixture and all maintenance and replacement costs.
  • If a member wishes to replace an existing HPS automatic light with a LED automatic light before a maintenance issue has occurred, they may pay the $20 installation charge to have the fixture changed.

To order a LED automatic light or to report a maintenance issue with your current automatic light, contact your local SWEC office and have your account information ready.

Pictured below is a view of the 12 LED's which are the yellow dots inside the clear domes on the fixture.



Call us at 800-262-0326 or  Contact Us