To the Editor,
Once again I find myself featured on the Facebook pages of the Croton Dems and Trustee Brian Pugh in connection with the Community Choice Aggregation (CCA) program. For his own political purposes, Mr. Pugh has declared me to be an expert on the CCA, but let me share some of that expertise with you anyway.
Mr. Pugh claims that the CCA is providing “. . . 100% renewable power for less than the average ConEd price.” But is that really so?
The answer is that we don’t know yet. Because the CCA didn’t begin until this past May, and as electric rates vary widely over the year, we won’t know how well the CCA performed until next summer. But we can make a pretty good estimate by considering ConEd’s rates over the past 12 months.
During that period, the ConEd rate varied from a low of 5.39¢/kwh in May to a high of 8.72¢/kwh in August. The average for the year was 7.57¢/kwh. That’s just 0.19¢/kwh above the CCA basic rate (~25% renewable) of 7.38¢/kwh.
If we assume an average CCA customer used 500 kwh/month or 6,000 kwh/year, that customer would have saved the munificent sum of $11.40 for the year, or 95¢ per month. WOW!! 95¢ a month!! With that you could buy… Is there anything you can buy for 95¢ any more?
A CCA customer who elected the 100% renewable power option would have paid a fixed rate of 7.68¢/kwh, a price that’s ABOVE the 7.57¢/kwh ConEd average rate. So, Mr. Pugh, I’m afraid you’re wrong. The CCA is not providing “. . . 100% renewable power for less than the average ConEd price.”
But the main reason that Croton isn’t participating in the CCA is that Mr. Pugh, Trustee Ann Gallelli and the rest of the then all-Dem board decided to violate the NYPSC order to conduct a community outreach program before committing to the CCA (as many other communities did), so very few Crotonites knew anything about the program. That board felt they knew better than you did what’s good for you, and were prepared to force you into the CCA essentially without your knowledge.
The current board has a different philosophy. They don’t believe that something as important as your electric supply should be changed without your understanding the new program. And since there wasn’t enough time to conduct a real outreach program before a decision had to be made, they had to decline to participate.
And I should point out that Croton is not alone. Cortlandt, Yorktown, Briarcliff Manor, Mount Pleasant, Pound Ridge, Harrison, Scarsdale, and Yonkers are among the many other communities that also chose not to participate in CCA.
So Mr. Pugh, if you are going to insist on plastering my picture all over Facebook, please stop quoting me out of context. And please start telling the truth about the CCA program.
Joel E. Gingold