Operation Round Up

Operation Round Up

Please read the following prior to filling out the application, as our information has changed.

PURPOSE: 
Operation Round Up (ORU) is a non-profit program that administers grants to organizations in our community.  Giving back to the community is one of the seven cooperative principles.

HOW IT'S FUNDED: 
Our Operation Round Up program is an opt-out program.  This means members' electric bills are automatically rounded up to the next nearest dollar amount. The monthly contribution could be as little as a penny, but never more than ninety-nine cents.  For example, a member's electric bill is $81.75.  The bill would be rounded to $82.00 and the $.25 would be deposited in the ORU fund. The average donation per member, per year is around $6.00.  This donation is also tax deductible.  Nonprofit and charitable organizations in our community are awarded grants via an application process.  The five-member volunteer board meets quarterly to review applications. 

ELIGIBILITY

  • Requests must be for charitable, educational or non-profit organizations only.
  • Non-profit organizations that serve communities located within Freeborn & Mower Counties.
  • One application per project or event accepted each year.
  • Charitable status or 501 (c) (#) organizations.
  • Application must be received or post-marked by the deadline date and be for a project or event in the future (will not grant projects in the past).

GRANT LIMITS

  • $300 per school for After-Prom and/or After-Graduation Events.
  • $300 for Booster Clubs - Athletic/School
  • $500 annually per project/event for an organization. 
  • $2,000 annually for volunteer fire departments or first responder units serving the areas within Freeborn & Mower Counties.

REQUIREMENTS

  • Completed application form submitted before deadline.
  • Non-profit organization in Freeborn and/or Mower County.
  • If funds are requested to purchase a new item or for a repair, please include two (2) bids for the item or work.  At least one bid should be from a vendor or supplier within the FMCS territory.
  • Documentation of purchase or verification of receipt of the grant dollars.

EVALUATION FACTORS

  • Potential benefit to area residents and the entire community.
  • Geographic area served.

EXAMPLES OF ALLOWED EVENTS/PROJECTS (but not limited to)

  • Education, art, music or theatrical programs at public or private schools, or provided through community organizations.
  • Public library programs or improvements.
  • Leadership or business clubs or events sponsored by a school or community organization.
  • Teen, community or recreation center improvements & events.
  • Equipment for athletic teams that remains relatively fixed in place, such as; soccer goals, basketball backboards, scoreboards, swimming pool equipment, etc.
  • Clearly defined youth programs including 4H & FFA.
  • After-Prom Events and After-Graduation Events

NOT ALLWOWED EVENTS/PROJECTS

Please do not apply for funding for any of the following

  • General operating, tax or payroll expenses.
  • Individual or group registration fees (field trips, camp, etc).
  • Scholarship programs or individual scholarships.
  • Political causes or lobbying.
  • Advertising
  • Projects of religious denominations, unless the expenditure is directed to the benefit of the community at large (all youth, all elderly, etc.) and is not limited or offered primarily to members of that denomination.
  • Repairs and improvements to private property or that of religious denominations.
  • Organizations or programs outside of FMCS service territory, unless a direct benefit is provided to a significant number of FMCS members.
  • Uniforms, personal athletic equipment, or general sponsorship for little leagues, traveling teams and youth clubs, etc.
  • Specific community foundations, unless the application designates a specific project.

Each application will be considered on a quarterly basis. 

Meetings are held about one month after each deadline.  Funds are disbursed a few days after the meetings are held. 

Inquiries may be made to dschroeder@fmcs.coop

APPLICATION DEADLINES  

  • March 15
  • June 15
  • September 15
  • December 15.

Trustee meetings are held the beginning of April, July, October and January. Projects completed prior to trustee meetings may not be funded.

Please apply early for best consideration.

Funds are disbursed approximately one month after each deadline.