Burlco Energy Aggregation Program
Burlington County to start cost-saving energy aggregation program for some towns in fall
Mt. Laurel Sun Article, July 16, 2016
Burlington County Freeholder Mary Ann O’Brien has announced that the Burlington County Board of Chosen Freeholders’ cost-saving Energy Aggregation Program will go into effect this September, with participating residents expected to see savings in their October electric bills.
“This Energy Aggregation Program allows Burlington County to make a ‘bulk purchase’ of energy supply at a rate that is guaranteed to be lower than what residents are currently paying to their electric company,” O’Brien said. “We can then offer that lower rate to our residents in participating municipalities. This will help to decrease the ever growing cost of utilities, an issue particularly important to those on a fixed income.”
The Freeholder Board hosted a competitive auction on Tuesday, June 14 to determine the program’s new fixed rate.
“I am pleased to announce that this process has enabled us to obtain real savings for our residents,” O’Brien said. “Customers of Jersey Central Power and Light (JCP&L) will recognize a savings of at least 20 percent over their current rate, with customers of PSE&G recognizing a savings of at least 5 percent and Atlantic City Electric (ACE) customers seeing a savings of at least 13 percent; for an average of more than 12 percent in savings over 14 months.”
O’Brien said combined this means a total savings for residents of more than $2.8 million.
“One of the great things about this program is that, by law, it must offer our residents the lowest available rate,” O’Brien said. “This means that if at any time the default utility rate were to fall below the rate we received at auction, participating residents would receive that lower rate. That way, the savings are guaranteed.”
O’Brien said now that the aggregate rate has been determined, residents in participating towns will receive the lower rate, or they may ‘opt out’ of the program to either their current utility rate or to a third party provider.
“In that way, this plan not only lowers costs but also expands consumer choice by providing residents with a third option not currently available to them,” O’Brien said.
The Burlington County Bridge Commission will partner with the Freeholders to execute the energy aggregation program, providing technical and professional support and services.
This program was made available to all municipalities in Burlington County. Ultimately Burlington City, Cinnaminson, Florence, Lumberton, Moorestown, Palmyra, Southampton, Riverside, Woodland, and Wrightstown all chose to participate in this first round of the program. Those municipalities that have not chosen to participate in this initial launch will have an opportunity to do so in subsequent rounds of the program.
“This program is part of our long standing effort to fight for lower utility costs on behalf of our residents, a fight in which we have had many successes,” Freeholder O’Brien said. “For example, many will remember our public battle to stop New Jersey American Water from increasing water rates by 20 percent in 23 of our municipalities. We gathered more than 11,000 signatures from residents, and confronted the BPU through the mail and in person. When the smoke had cleared, their bid for a $95 million per year rate increase had been cut to less than a third of that amount.”
Please Click on the Below Link to Access the Outreach Kit for the Burlington County Energy Aggregation Program.