Public outreach planned for Community Choice Aggregation in Canton
BY PAUL MITCHELL
North Country This Week
CANTON – Over the next 60 days, Canton residents will have the opportunity to learn more about Community Choice Aggregation (CCA).
“We will be moving ahead with outreach and public information sessions over the next 60 days,” said Klaus Proemm, a village trustee who has acted as lead agent for the village board regarding Community Choice Aggregation, at a Jan. 18 village board meeting. “The basic timeline is public education until March then pricing negotiations until the end of April or early May.”Proemm said that in June, a letter will be mailed to village residents explaining options offered by Joule Community Power, a firm which administers a large number of community choice aggregation power arrangements for municipalities throughout the state, with an option to “opt out.”
The goal is to begin receiving power from a renewable source in August, Proemm remarked.
Deputy Mayor Anna Sorensen noted that regulatory requirements call for two public Zoom sessions.
“It has been our concern getting this information out to the community,” Sorensen said. “I Really want our community to know as much as possible about this before we make a decision.”
Trustee Barbara Beekman suggested mailing a pre-Joule letter to the public not only alerting them to the pending letter from Joule but including pertinent information of CCA.
Sorensen advocated for a presentation by Joule to the board at its February monthly board meeting. The presentation has tentatively been scheduled for 6 p.m. on Feb. 15.
Proemm had earlier provided a brief summary of the Joule program.
“By sourcing all renewable energy, we'll both save money for residents, or we won't do it) and lessen the burning of fossil fuels, thereby lowering our carbon footprint, minimizing climate impacts,” he said. “To clarify the actual energy purchase scenario, the decision on whether to go ahead with an energy "buy" will be made well after extensive public outreach/education, and after we've carefully examined the rates and conditions of the energy purchase, and we're convinced it is a good rate and is secure.”
“All residents will have the ability to opt out, both at the start, and at any time after. A letter will go out to all Village residents explaining options before the purchase happens,” Proemm continued.
The contract that the Village of Canton (and the Town of Potsdam) has with Joule Community Power is for them to be our CCA administrator. The power purchase contract will potentially come much later, probably in the fall, after the public outreach and thorough review, Proemm remarked.
To date, there is no contract in place.
“This community choice aggregation program would enable the village of Canton to provide eligible residents and small businesses with the benefits of renewable electricity supply,” a release on the village website reads.
For more information about the Village of Canton Community Power program, please visit www.joulecommunitypower.com/cantonvillage