Mayor Yaede Starts Process to Lower Energy Costs
for Township Residents and Businesses
Following Mayor Kelly Yaede’s call for lowering energy costs for Hamilton residents and businesses during her State of the Township Address, Hamilton will take its first step toward making the cost-savings plan a reality through a community-wide energy aggregation (or “government energy aggregation”).
The program allows towns the ability to reduce residents’ and businesses’ energy bills by aggregating customers into one bid to a third party energy supplier to achieve a reduced energy supply cost at prices below what the utility would charge for power supply. Similar to bulk-purchasing, an energy aggregation program provides lower energy savings through economies of scale. State law also requires the energy aggregation price be below utility power supply costs.
“As Mayor, I am continuously looking for ways to save money for our hard-working residents and our local businesses that provide jobs for our citizens; and through energy aggregation, we will reduce energy costs to benefit our entire community,” says Hamilton Township Mayor Kelly Yaede.
After reviewing proposals by five different energy aggregation consultants, Yaede’s administration is recommending Gabel Associates to implement the community’s cost-savings plan.
Of all the proposals, Gabel Associates was the only consultant to have successfully completed a community-wide energy aggregation in New Jersey and was the second-lowest in cost. Additionally, Gabel Associates was the first firm to successfully implement a community-wide (or “government energy aggregation”) in New Jersey, the first Energy Agent registered with the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities over 13 years ago and completed the most government energy aggregations (seven) in the last year.
Gabel Associates’ list of successful community-wide energy aggregations include: Toms River (the state’s 8th most populated community), Plumsted, Monroe, Montgomery, West Orange, Lambertville and West Amwell. The firm’s positive results have included a 12 percent savings on power supply costs for the residents of Toms River, an approximately 14 percent savings for Plumsted residents, a nearly 20 percent savings for Monroe residents, an approximately 10 percent savings for West Orange residents, and a 12 percent savings for Lambertville and West Amwell residents.
Additionally, the firm is currently implementing government energy aggregation programs in Little Ferry and Colts Neck.
As part of their contract, which the Hamilton Township Council will consider at tomorrow night’s public meeting, Gabel Associates would manage the municipal aggregation program, prepare proposal requests for third party power suppliers, ensure compliance with all New Jersey Board of Public Utilities regulations and look to maximize savings for residents and businesses with at least a five (5) percent savings in the energy supply portion of energy of electric bills.
The bid will be for only the power supply portion of the bill. Energy would still be delivered to residents and businesses through Public Service Electric & Gas, which would continue to handle billing, account services, and restoration services for all Hamilton customers.
Hamilton customers would have an ability to “opt-out” if they do not wish to participant in the cost savings program, although customers who may currently be receiving power from a third party supplier other than Public Service Electric & Gas would be required to “opt-in” to the community aggregation plan.
Due to current market conditions that have led to higher natural gas costs at what Public Service Electric & Gas is providing, Gabel Associates’ recommends that Hamilton only includes electricity in the program’s initial offering, although the potential to extend the program to gas does remain for future consideration.