Electricity users in Forest Park will see a significant reduction in their energy bills later this year thanks to a cheaper bulk-rate cost for electricity the village has negotiated.
On March 20, voters agreed to allow the village to bid on their behalf for aggregated electricity. Forest Park is taking advantage of a 1997 change in energy regulation that allows large entities like cities to negotiate to buy power at lower electric rates.
May 9, the village made a deal with First Energy Solutions to buy electricity at 4.7 cents per kilowatt. ComEd currently charges more than 7 cents/kw and on June 1 they will raise their price to 8.5 cents/kw.
This switch will save $4 million annually in Forest Park, averaging $300 per year per customer, said a
village press release.
Under the aggregation plan, Forest Parkers will still receive a bill from ComEd, and the ComEd delivery portion of the bill would remain the same. Residents will continue to call ComEd for service disruptions. Savings would be in the purchasing of the power itself. ComEd continues to deliver the power through its grid, regardless of the supplier.
All eligible residents and small businesses will be enrolled, unless they choose to “opt out” of the aggregation and continue to purchase the more expensive electricity from Com Ed, or switch to a competitive power supplier.
“The residents made the right decision in voting for the referendum to allow this program,” said Mayor Anthony Calderone.
The savings will begin to appear on bills in June, said Village Administrator Tim Gillian.