BARC Introduces New Program

During the winter we all use more electricity; the heaters are running, we watch more television, we turn the lights on earlier, and the kids spend more time inside playing on computers and video game consoles. In other words: we all use more electricity. This reality can be disastrous for a family in economic crisis.

Approximately 15 out of 100 people in our area struggle to pay their electricity bill. BARC member service representatives work to find ways to help members avoid disconnects. Now, qualified members facing financial hardship can also find help through Power from the Heart.

BARC has partnered with CornerStone Bank, The Salvation Army, Rockbridge Area Relief Association, and Bath County Emergency Services. Power from the Heart is designed to help members keep the electricity on when times are tough.

Members who enroll in the program have the option of rounding their electric bill up to the nearest dollar. The maximum contribution is $.99 each month. The average customer will contribute $6.00 per year and can opt out at anytime. The funds collected are deposited and managed by CornerStone Bank in Lexington, Virginia.

Screening and approval of applicants is done by the Salvation Army, Bath County Emergency Fund, and Rockbridge Area Relief Association. Power from the Heart is not intended to be a regular remedy to paying bills, but a last resort for members facing disconnection.

Power from the Heart is a member supported community based economic cooperative program. For more information about the program:

Story By

Scott Smith

Scott Smith is the General Manager for Allegheny Mountain Radio and Station Coordinator and News Reporter for WVLS. Scott’s family has deep roots in Highland County. While he did not grow up here, he spent as much time as possible on the family farm, and eventually moved to Highland to continue the tradition, which he still pursues with his cousin. Unfortunately, farming doesn’t pay all the bills, so he has previously taken other jobs to support his farming hobby, including pressman/writer for The Recorder, and Ag Projects Coordinator for The Highland Center. He lives in Hightown with wife Michelle and son Ethan. In his spare time, he wishes he had more spare time, especially to ride his prized Harley-Davidson motorcycle.

Current Weather