- The savings for residents cited by energy aggregation consultants are often overstated, or fleeting…
- Aggregation contracts may even be modified or terminated if the supplier can’t deliver on the savings promised.
See articles below for more information…
FirstEnergy plans polar vortex surcharge on suburban electric bills
Residents of Rockford and 97 other municipalities in northern Illinois will be charged extra on their electric bills to cover unexpected costs incurred during the polar vortex by their supplier, FirstEnergy Solutions.
Akron, Ohio-based FirstEnergy has contracts to supply electricity to about 180 villages and cities in Commonwealth Edison Co.’s service territory. It is by far the largest area supplier to seek to pass through the financial pain tied to the unusually harsh cold snap in January, when energy costs briefly spiked. Rockford is the state’s third-largest city, after Chicago and Aurora.
A FirstEnergy spokeswoman said the surcharge will affect 220,000 of its 670,000 Illinois customers.
Some suburban electricity deals to be costlier than ComEd
Municipal politicians who have moved to buy cheap power on behalf of their households have so far experienced nothing but the rewards of playing the energy market. Now officials in 15 towns, including west suburban Oak Park, are about to find out there are risks, too.
Contracts they negotiated more than a year ago with power suppliers to lower residents’ electric bills — that until now offered savings from Commonwealth Edison Co.’s energy price — will exceed the costs ComEd customers pay beginning in June.
ComEd’s energy price, including the costs of transmitting electricity from power plants over high-voltage lines to the utility’s local distribution system, is expected to drop to about 5.55 cents per kilowatt-hour from 8.3 cents per kilowatt-hour currently, according to the Illinois Commerce Commission.
The price being paid by most residents in Oak Park, which has an energy-supply contract with Integrys Energy Services Inc. until December, is 5.79 cents per kilowatt-hour, 4 percent higher than the projected ComEd charge. Making matters worse, Oak Park residents who want to go back to ComEd or find another supplier must pay $50 to exit the Integrys pact.
Chicago Heights to Change Electric Suppliers as Rates Climb
After opting into the Electrical Aggregation program, Chicago Heights residents saved nearly $200,000 in utilities costs in 2013. Now, due to rising rates, the City of Chicago Heights will be switching electrical providers.
Last year, the City made the switch from ComEd to First Energy Solutions and provided residents a decrease in electricity costs from 8.3 cents per kilowatt hour (kWh) to 4.6 cents per kWh. The contract with First Energy was for just one year.
Chicago electric bills to rise up to 18% in June under new Integrys deal
Residential electric bills in Chicago will increase roughly 14 to 18 percent in June under a new deal the city has struck with its power supplier, Integrys Energy Services.
That follows an increase in January thanks to higher delivery charges by Commonwealth Edison Co.
But, despite the significant increase to come, the city predicts customers will continue to save modestly over the even-higher power supply rates they expect ComEd to charge beginning in June. Electric bills are divided between charges for delivery, which is handled by ComEd, and supply, which can be done by ComEd or other companies.
The city struck its new deal last week with Chicago-based Integrys, which currently provides electricity to 720,000 Chicago households and small businesses. Rates will rise about 14 percent for units in multifamily buildings and 18 percent for single-family homes. The pact runs through May 2015.
Electricity cost going up 17% in Buffalo Grove
Buffalo Grove has locked in a new supplier for electrical aggregation for the next three years, with the price for power going up about 17 percent starting in June.
And unlike some other towns in the consortium that signed the deal, Buffalo Grove didn’t opt for 100 percent renewable energy, though residents can choose that option at an additional 1.4 percent cost per kilowatt hour.
Deputy Village Manager Jennifer Maltas told the village board Monday that Buffalo Grove reached a three-year deal with Constellation Energy Resources at a rate of 6.529 cents per kilowatt hour.
“It was the lowest fixed-price we could obtain over the period,” Maltas said. “The price for electricity is rising for all customers, and it’s largely due to changes in how capacity is charged, and that is going to be something that impacts every electricity provider, including ComEd.”