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Electric Aggregation Could Cut Supply Rates by 40 Percent: Village Consultant

NIMEC marketing director Sharon Durling took questions from Clarendon Hills trustees and residents at Monday night's Village Board meeting.

Clarendon Hills residents could expect a 40 percent drop in the electricity supply rate on their monthly ComEd bill if an electric aggregation referendum is passed by voters and a contract is reached with an alternative supplier, a spokesperson for the village’s electric aggregation consultant said Monday night.

Marketing director Sharon Durling of the Northern Illinois Municipal Electric Collaborative (NIMEC), the organization hired by the village to help it through the referendum and bidding processes, said at Monday night’s Village Board meeting that based on Clarendon Hills residents’ relatively high electricity usage, a negotiated rate of 5 cents per kilowatt-hour is very possible.

That rate would be more than 3 cents lower than the 8.36 cents per kilowatt-hour ComEd customers are currently paying, a rate that is expected to go down in 2013.

READ: How Does Electric Aggregation Work?

Even though Clarendon Hills is a small town, Durling said, its residents are valued by the alternative suppliers who would bid for the village’s business if the aggregation referendum is approved.

“Companies bid very aggressively because they’d rather get 1,000 accounts than sell one at a time,” Durling said.

She said the 5-cent rate is a conservative estimate on her part, and the actual rate the village agrees to with a bidding supplier could end up being lower.

Last May, the Village of Hinsdale Board of Trustees, who also hired NIMEC as a consultant, voted unanimously in favor of a three-year contract with Nordic Energy Services for the supply of electricity to Hinsdale residents at a rate of 4.62 cents per kilowatt-hour, about 3 cents lower than the 7.73 cents per kilowatt-hour ComEd rate at that time.

READ: Hinsdale Board Selects Village's New Electricity Supplier

That agreement was reached about six weeks after Hinsdale residents voted overwhelmingly in favor of aggregation.

Should ComEd’s rate go below 4.62 cents in the next three years, under the Hinsdale agreement, Nordic will have to match that rate or the village will have the option to go back to ComEd.

Durling said Monday night that such a condition would likely be included in any agreement Clarendon Hills reached with an alternative supplier, as well.

Clarendon Hills trustee Allan Alongi, the Village Board’s Administrative/Legislative Committee chair, said the first of two public hearings on the village’s plan of governance and operation will be held at the Village Board’s Nov. 5 meeting.

Nov. 6 is Election Day, when the referendum will either be approved or rejected. If residents give the go-ahead, the second public hearing and a vote on the plan of governance and operation will take place at the board’s Nov. 19 meeting. An agreement with the selected alternative supplier should be done by Nov. 20. At that point, residents will have 60 days to opt out of the program.

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