History of Citizens Electric Corporation
Electric cooperatives began to crop up nationwide after President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed the Rural Electrification Administration (REA) into law in 1935. The REA provided low interest loans to cooperatives in order to electrify Rural America.
Genevieve Electric Cooperative was formed in 1941 under the direction of the REA to extend power lines to Rural Southeastern Missouri. In 1945, at the end of World War II, the first 202 miles of line were energized, and Genevieve Electric started active operation as a rural electric cooperative. Later that same year, Genevieve Electric Cooperative acquired all of the property of Missouri General Utilities Company which was providing power to Perry, Ste. Genevieve, and Northern Cape Girardeau Counties.
With the acquisition of Missouri General Utilities, Genevieve Electric Cooperative began serving Ste. Genevieve and Perryville, each having a population of over 1,500 customers. Since cooperatives were prohibited from serving any municipality with a population exceeding 1,500, it was necessary to reorganize Genevieve Electric Cooperative.
To accomplish this reorganization, CEC was organized, incorporated, and the charter was issued on November 17, 1947. Citizens Electric is celebrating 65 years of service in 2012.