Madison Township sees electricity savings

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By Linda Dillman
Staff Writer

A utility aggregation ballot issue approved by Madison Township voters more than a year ago is delivering on its promise to save residents money on their electric bills.

Consultant Scott Belcastro reported on residential cost savings to the Madison Township trustees on May 21. He said taxpayers saved more than $179,000 since the program went into effect last year.

Residents were able to “opt-out” of the program. However, Belcastro said the participation rate was better than 90 percent. Border Energy provides customers electric generation and transmission at 15 percent less than AEP rates for the same services. AEP still charges for distribution and is responsible for problems with service or if lines are down.

“It looks to be about $9 per month in savings per household,” Trustee Victor Paini calculated. “It’s fantastic…pretty exciting.”

Deregulation of gas and electric utilities in Ohio opened the door for individuals and entities like the township to negotiate a lower rate for generation and transmission service. Following approval of the ballot issue, Madison Township and Belcastro began the process of investigating alternative electric suppliers and chose the Powell-based, 10-year-old company.

Over 150 communities are involved in similar electric programs across Ohio and Belcastro expects more to join following the November election.

“The electric (aggregation) program is very successful,” Belcastro said. “It gives us a tremendous amount of buying power.”

Other Madison Township news

The trustees approved a joint agreement with Canal Winchester Local Schools and the city to construct a new fueling station located at the high school.

The township expects to not only save on fuel and travel costs for the fire department, but newer fuel pumps will allow for greater employee efficiency by reducing the amount of time spent fueling vehicles.

“The anticipated cost of the project at this time is $95,400 and the township’s share, based on fuel consumption, is $8,800,” said Madison Township Administrator Susan Brobst. “It will initially be used by Station 182 on a regular basis and as a back-up in case our system goes down.”

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