Town’s power plan slated to begin by December
By Robert Fucci
Sutton Board of Selectmen Chair David Hall says the town’s energy aggregation plan is a positive for all residents and business owners. Photo by Robert Fucci SUTTON – Town Energy Manager Doreen DeFazio and Peregrine CEO Paul Gromer provided the Board of Selectmen an update on Sutton’s aggregation plan during its March 8 meeting, saying it should be up and running before year’s end .
According to Gromer, Sutton residents and business owner will be able to opt in to the plan in either late fall or early winter.
“That’s the best time to start,” said Gromer, explaining that’s when high energy use begins to ramp up. “The town is on track [to begin the program then].”
The plan, named Sutton Power Choice, will be a municipal electricity aggregation. By bulk purchasing electricity for the entire community within the program, Sutton will seek a lower rate than National Grid’s Basic Service electricity supply rate and the price stability that comes with a fixed contract.
The program, which was approved by the town last year, will launch once the Town’s aggregation plan is approved by the Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities.
“That will take two to six months,” Gromer said. “Once we have that, then the town is in control of the schedule.”
All Sutton residents and businesses that currently receive National Grid Basic Service will be automatically enrolled in Sutton Power Choice. Electricity customers who have already established a contract with their own electricity supplier will not be automatically enrolled.
Customers will receive an opt-out letter 30 days before the start of the program. Other opt-out options include calling an 800 number that will be in the letter, or by visiting SuttonMA.org.
“There will be no charge for opting out,” Gromer said. “You can opt out at any time.”
For those who accept the plan, National Grid will continue to provide service and customers will receive just one bill.
Anyone who participates in budget billing or is eligible for discounts from National Grid will continue to receive those same benefits as a participant in Sutton Power Choice. Those with solar panels on their property will continue to receive net metering credits as a participant in this program.
“This is a great choice for Sutton residents,” Vice Chair John Hebert said. “All of our meetings have been positive.”
DeFazio said customers who are confused about the plan and whether other companies may try to trick them into signing with them will be given clear notice from the Town of Sutton.
“We’ve had discussions with Peregrine about how other programs may present themselves,” she said. “We’ve decided to coin this ‘Sutton Power Choice’ and we’re having a logo made. Everything from the town will be consistent and hopefully eliminates some confusion.”
Hard copies of the plan are available at Town Hall.
“Peregrine not here by accident,” said Chair David Hall, explaining how the town researched the company before choosing it. “This really should be a good thing for everybody once we are up and implemented. This looks like a really great thing for us. I’m happy to see it progressing.”