The purpose of Community Choice Power Supply Program is to represent consumer interests in competitive markets for electricity. It seeks to give Ashby residents choice and control over the source of their electricity and stabilizes electricity bills in the future by using the bulk buying power of all of its ratepayers. Ashby will be working with Colonial Power Group to implement the program.
Ashby entered into an Electric Service Agreement with Hampshire Power on June 2, 2015.
How did it start? The article below, passed at the 2012 Annual Town meeting, initiated the the Community Choice Program.
Article 16. To see if the Town will vote, pursuant to G.L. c.164, §134(a), to authorize the Board of Selectmen to initiate the process to aggregate the electric load of interested electricity consumers within the Town of Ashby and enter into agreements for services to facilitate the sale and purchase of electric energy and other related services, or to take any other action relative thereto. Passed unanimous
How does it work? The Town has received bids from competitive electric energy suppliers to supply electricity for all the meters in Ashby. The Town has accepted a bid from Hampshire Power. All meters will be billed at the competitive supplier rate unless you choose to opt out of the program.
Will I receive a separate electric bill? No. You will receive your bill from Unitil. Your electric bill payments will be made to Unitil. The change is that Unitil will bill you at the competitive supplier rate rather than their supplier rate.
Can I opt out of this program? Yes. You can opt out of the program. You will then be billed at Unitil's supplier rate unless you have chosen another competitive supplier. Go to the the Colonial Power Group web site to opt out.
If you have already chosen a competitive supplier on your own you must opt out of the program in order to continue receiving electricity from that supplier.
Can the program result in a higher rate than Unitil's supplier rate (average winter and summer rates)? Yes, under certain circumstances. Unitil's supplier rate changes every six months. The Town, through the Community Choice Program, may accept a bid to supply electricity at a set rate for a longer period of time, say one or two years. If market prices fall, it is possible that during some succeding six month period Unitil's supplier rate will be lower than the Community Choice rate.
Will the Fuel Assistance Rate (R2) be available to income eligible customers? Yes. Customers who qualify will continue to receive the R2 rate from Unitil.