Monday, February 12, 2007

If Municipal Utilities are so great, why doesn't every city have one?

This article by Melinda Tuhus of newhavenindependent.com discusses the difficulties in creating a "Muni". The short version -- great idea but they cost too much to set up. Too bad because they seem to weather market fluctuations pretty well. Customers of municipal utilities in California cities, like Sacramento, were sitting pretty by the pool while everyone else in the state was unscrewing the bulbs from their refridgerator doors.

"DeStefano’s spokesman Derek Slap said all the energy focus has been on reducing municipal spending on energy through conservation and on promoting clean energy."
This is really the only safe bet.

1 comment:

Esbey said...

With retail "deregulation" anyone, even the city of New Haven, can start a "electric company" without owning any power plants or any transmission lines. UI has to provide transmission at a regulated rate and your "electric company" can buy power on the open market.

I am not saying this is a good idea, but New Haven could set up English Station as a "peaking power" plant and then buy the rest of its electricity on the open market.

The question is, why would they get a better deal than UI gets on the open market ... the only real advantage might be in surmounting any regulatory/political hurdles in re-opening a power plant within city limits ...