Wisconsin electric cooperatives developed a uniform statewide farm wiring program entitled "Safety First!". The purpose is to assist dairy farmers with the cost of rewiring projects and to promote safety.
Loans and Grants
- A loan/grant combination is available up to $25,000
- Grants are available for 20% or up to $5,000 from the Wisconsin Electric Cooperative Association
- Loans are available for 80% or up to $20,000 from your energy cooperative
- Up to 5 years to repay
- 3% interest
- Dairy farms only
- Existing farmstead on Pierce Pepin Cooperative Services electric lines
- Pre-program inspection
- Electrician's estimate
- Service agreement for length of loan
- Credit eligibility requirements
Frequently Asked Questions
How will the loan be billed?
The monthly loan payment will be included on your electric bill.
Will I have to sign a service agreement?
Yes. A service agreement, indicating that you will receive energy from your electric cooperative for the duration of the loan, is required.
Can I apply for a grant and not a loan?
Yes, 20% of the total cost of the project, up to $5,000, is available without application for a loan.
What are the credit eligibility requirements?
Members cannot have more than one late payment within the past 12 months.
Who will do the electrical work?
You can choose your electrician as long as he/she is a qualified* electrician.
Can I get a loan for wiring a new barn?
No. Only existing structures are eligible. New barns must be wired according to the latest version of the code.
Will funds be available to rewire my house as well as the barn?
Yes, if the service for the barn is served from the main panel in the house.
Can I pay the loan off early without a penalty?
What happens if I default on my loan?
If you're delinquent on your loan (for 2 consecutive months), the loan will become due and payable immediately. The electric service may be subject to disconnection.
Are there any fees associated with this loan?
Yes. Pre- and post-inspections, by an approved State-Certified Inspector, are required for the loan. However, Pierce Pepin Cooperative Services will pay the costs of these inspections. The Uniform Commercial Code (UCC) filing fee will be your responsibility.
When will I receive the grant money?
Grant money will be given after a post-inspection, when the wiring work is completed according to National Electric Code (NEC), and all of the invoices and the wiring affidavit are given to your energy cooperative.
Is there a lien on my property?
Yes. The rewiring project serves as collateral for the loan.
How do I apply?
Download an application. Then contact Pierce Pepin Cooperative Services at 715-273-4355 or 800-924-2133. We will schedule an appointment with an approved State-certified inspector and one of our representatives will help determine the extent of the project. You choose an approved qualified* electrician to give you a bid on the project and provide us a copy of the bid. If the bid meets the loan/grant requirements, the project is given preliminary approval.
What happens after the rewiring is completed?
We schedule the State-Certified Inspector to inspect the work and he/she provides written documentation that the work was completed according to the NEC. You provide us with the invoices from the electrician and an Electrical Inspection Certificate. You choose if you want us to pay the electrician or the electrician and yourself. We send a check request for the grant money and you choose to whom you want the check payable to - the electrician or the electrician and yourself.
What expenses are covered under the loan and/or grant?
Labor and materials needed to rewire the farm are covered. Isolation transformers, rings of life, and other systems not defined in the NEC are not eligible expenses under this program.
How is the grant program funded?
Wisconsin Electric Cooperatives contribute funds towards the grant money.
*See co-op for definition of qualified electrician.