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Consortium to save residents 41 percent on electricity, officials say

The North Shore Electricity Aggregation Consortium will save residents in eight north suburban communities 41 percent on their electric bills starting this summer, officials announced on Tuesday.

The consortium members are Deerfield, Glencoe, Highland Park, Lake Bluff, Lake Forest, Northbrook, Park Ridge, and Skokie. Residents of those communities approved the consortium in a referendum during the March 20 election.

Officials who unveiled the new rate during a press conference at Skokie Village Hall boasted the new rate will allow residents and small business owners to save hundreds of dollars per year on electricity.

The 41 percent price reduction refers to the electricity supply portion of the bill only, not  the cost of delivery, said Skokie Mayor George Van Dusen.  A resident who now pays $100 per month will see about a $20 decrease in the electricity portion of his or her bill. That’s about $240 in savings per year, said Phil Kiraly, Northbrook’s assistant village manager.

The reductions stem from the consortium’s ability to buy electricity in bulk. That lowered the rate to 4.836 cents per kilowatt-hour rate with electricity supplier MC Squared Energy Services, compared to Commonwealth Edison’s rate of 8.233 cents per kilowatt-hour.

The new rate takes effect in June and July, consortium officials said.

The consortium paid Holland & Knight law firm and consulting firm Intelligent Power Partner to help arrange a 36-month contract with MC Squared. Kiraly didn’t know how much the consortium paid for these services, but said the cost will be spread out as part of residents’ bills.

Consortium officials will mail letters out to residents and small businesses in the next 21 days, explaining the program. Those who don’t wish to be part of the consortium’s pricing can opt out, otherwise they will be automatically included.

Those who now get their electricity from accompany other than ComEd and want to be part of the consortium’s pricing need to opt in to the aggregation program, consortium officials said.

Highland Park Mayor Nancy Rotering said some residents have contacted the city, saying other electricity suppliers have been sending letters to them about signing up with their services.

But she warned that residents should wait until receiving the consortium’s letter with the city’s seal before making decisions about energy suppliers.

On March 20, the majority of voters in each of the eight communities approved the consortium.

 

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