The City of Cleveland's City Council will held two (2) separate Public Hearings on the Plan of Operations and Governance (POG) for the upcoming Electric Aggregation Program for the City of Cleveland on Wednesday, May 31, 2023 at 5:00pm and Thursday, June 1, 2023 at 4pm.
The meetings were held in-person, live-streamed to Sustainable Cleveland's YouTube page, and broadcast to the TV20 Channel. The general public was welcome to join in-person or virtually. Time for public questions was allowed at the bottom of the agenda. Submitted public questions were received by attending the in-person meeting, attending the Webex or completing the online form in advance.
Summary of Discussion
The City of Cleveland is considering becoming a member of the Sustainable Ohio Public Energy Council (SOPEC), a regional council of governments under Chapter 167 of the Ohio Rev. Code. SOPEC provides energy services to member communities, political subdivisions, nonprofits, faith-based organizations, and public agencies. In preparation for taking this action, the City of Cleveland will be holding the two (2) Public Hearings referenced above to permit comments and questions regarding the SOPEC Electric Aggregation Program Plan of Operation and Governance.
The SOPEC Electric Aggregation Program Plan of Operation and Governance describes the policies and procedures by which the government aggregation program will be carried out for electricity for eligible Cleveland residents and small commercial customers, including those policies and procedures related to rates and customer service. The SOPEC Electric Aggregation Program Plan of Operation and Governance addresses the following topics regarding the Electric Aggregation Program: (I) Introduction; (II) Description and Objectives of the Aggregation Program: Endorsement Program; (III) Goals of the Aggregation Program; (IV) Rates; (V) Steps for Communities during the Aggregation Program; (VI) Participation in the Aggregation Program: Endorsement Program; (VII) Notification of Opt-Out Aggregation Program Customers; (VIII) The City of Athens, Ohio Carbon Fee; (IX) Customer Service; (X) Customer Protections; (XI) Customer Complaints; (XII) Termination of Participation in the Opt-Out Aggregation Program; (XIII) Termination of Participation in the Opt-In Aggregation Program; (XIV) Organizational Structure and Organizational Structure Chart; (XV) Certification; (XVI) Aggregation Program Funding; and (XVII) Modification of the SOPEC’s Plan.
Copies of the Electric Aggregation Program Plan of Operation and Governance may be obtained at Cleveland City Hall, 1st floor- outside the Cleveland Public Library extension, as well as at the Circulation Desk (Vital Statistics), between the hours of 8:00 A.M. and 5:00 P.M., Monday through Friday.
THE COMMUNITY CHOICE AGGREGATION PROGRAM IS HERE!
For City of Cleveland FirstEnergy/Illuminating Customers
We are very pleased to announce the City of Cleveland has finalized the roll-out of the 2023 Community Choice Electricity Aggregation to our eligible residents and small commercial businesses, starting in August 2023, thanks to City Council’s timely legislative approvals and work by our program partner Sustainable Ohio Public Energy Council - SOPEC.
Through our group buying power with selected aggregator SOPEC, the city administration was able to secure a very competitive default ‘opt-out’ 1 year fixed rate of 6.302 cents/kWh for the electricity supply, backed by 100% Green-e certified Renewable Energy Credits (RECs). This price will save the average residential electricity account approximately $200 over the next year, compared to the Illuminating Company’s default electricity supply rates (12.4 cent/kWh).
As early as Tuesday, June 20th, eligible Cleveland residents can expect to see program letters from SOPEC that outline the community choice aggregation program, including step-down and opt-out pathways. For questions related to the program, contact SOPEC at 1877-648-1937
What is Community Choice Aggregation?
Community Choice Aggregation (CCA) is the opportunity for the City to provide residents an alternative "choice" to the default electricity supplier that the utility company uses. CCA programs are not mandatory, residents can opt-out if they wish. This is an optional service that the City provides to its residents, and this is how it works:
Electricity utility bills have two parts:
- A usage fee to move electricity through its wires and;
- A supply fee for the actual flow of electricity through its wires.
In Ohio, everyone has the option to shop for their own supply
- CCA programs allow for the City to combine or “aggregate” the electricity supply for residential and small businesses into one bulk amount. This is then used to carefully select an alternative choice to the default electricity supplier that the utility company uses.
- The benefit of combining (or aggregating) into a bulk amount is that this method is more likely to provide a better electricity product at a more stable price than residents could achieve on their own.
Utility Assistance Resource Fairs coming soon to Cleveland soon! Residents will receive on-site financial assistance for water, sewers, stormwater, gas, and electric bills.
I am a Cleveland Public Power (CPP) customer, do I need to do anything?
No, CPP customers are NOT affected by this change and no action is required.
I am a FirstEnergy/Illuminating Company customer, how do I enroll?
No action is required, all eligible customers will be automatically enrolled in the new program.
How do I know if I am eligible to participate in the new program?
All customers are automatically eligible, however, there are two exceptions:
- Customers enrolled in PIPP are not affected by rate increases, as their bills are based on household income and consistent year-round.
- Customers that are currently contracted with an independent energy supplier will not be automatically enrolled to participate.
Can I still participate if I am already contracted with another energy supplier?
You may be able to withdraw from your current supplier with an early or no termination fee, but please check with your supplier directly. Once your contract ends and if you match the program's eligibility criteria you will be automatically enrolled in the City's new program. This website will have additional information in July about possible "opt-in" options through the City's community choice aggregation program.
What do I do if I receive solicitations (door knocks, phone calls, etc...) from independent energy suppliers?
We advise you to NOT sign anything, write down the representative's name, company information, and immediately contact PUCO at (800) 686-7876. These companies are not apart of the City's community choice aggregation program and could lock you into an unreasonable contract.
If the PUCO does confirm an electricity supplier is certified, and you do not want to wait to be automatically enrolled in the City of Cleveland aggregation program, we strongly recommend that you ask a number of questions of any electricity supplier you talk to:
- Are you offering a fixed rate electricity supply contract to me?
- What is that fixed rate price?
- How long will that fixed rate last? 1 month? 6 months? A year? What happens to my price after that?
- If I agree to a contract with you, can I end that contract without any an early termination fee or other fees in order to join my city’s community choice aggregation program in July?
I don't want to wait, what do I do?
If residents prefer not to wait to automatically enrolled into the city's program, they can visit the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) Apples to Apples electricity comparison webpage or call 800-686-7826 for more information on finding their own supplier. Below is a list of potential options from the PUCO website. The City of Cleveland is providing this list for information only and is not endorsing any of these suppliers:
|(877) 648-1922||6.45c/kWh||12 MO||https://www.aepenergy.com/acquisition/campaign/offers/?state=OH&cc=puco-fe&utm_source=A2A&utm_medium=shopping&utm_campaign=ic_12|
Dynegy Energy Services
|(833) 277-8471||5.99c/kWh||7 MO||https://www.dynegy.com/|
Direct Energy Services, LLC
|(877) 698-7551||6.99c/kWh||12 MO||https://www.directenergy.com/ohio/electricity-plans|
Energy Harbor Services, LLC
|(844) 487-0822||6.28c/kWh||6 MO||https://energyharbor.com/en|
Other questions to ask are listed on the PUCO website - https://puco.ohio.gov/utilities/electricity/resources/choosing-an-electric-supplier
The City of Cleveland is making strives towards a more sustainable future. In a recent interview with 3News - we discuss the City's climate justice efforts and how this work will help to build a thriving City. Cleveland is embracing innovative solutions, such as promoting renewable energy, enhancing public transportation, and implementing energy-efficient measures. By prioritizing climate justice, we're ensuring that all Clevelanders have access to clean air, clean water, and sustainable opportunities for a better future.