Canton natural gas rate falls to $6.53/mcf until November
City officials will work with provider this fall to establish rate until 2012
City Law Director Joe Martuccio announced Friday that the City of Canton has locked in a new, low fixed rate of $6.53 per mcf on behalf of the city's natural gas aggregation program customers for gas consumed in the seven months between April and November 2010. The current program fixed rate of $11.75 per mcf was established between the city and Vectren Source in October 2008 and will expire at the end of this month.
"We have been watching the wholesale natural gas market very closely," said Law Director Martuccio. "We are delighted to have been able to strike such a low rate for our residents and businesses during this year's warmer months, and hope to get a similar low rate for Canton customers when we go back to the table this fall."
City officials are waiting to lock in a long-term aggregation rate in order to allow more time for market observation and rate analysis that can yield additional savings for program customers. In November 2001, voters authorized Canton city government to create a natural gas purchasing group in an effort to pool collective resources and secure lower rates from gas providers. Canton is represented in this process by Independent Energy Consultants, whose president Mark Burns expressed optimism at the prospect of securing low rates for city customers in the coming winter months.
"Wholesale natural gas prices are at 6 to 7 year lows, and Canton's rates are being set at an excellent time," Burns said. "We are just concluding a bitterly cold winter but are already looking at prices for next winter. Right now, setting a rate through October provides the greatest advantage."
Residents and businesses currently a part of the city's natural gas aggregation program do not need to take any action, as they will automatically receive the reduced rate as participants of the program. Residents who are served by another supplier may seek enrollment in the city's aggregation program by calling Vectren Source at (866) 200-4793. New customers to the program must be in good standing and cannot be a part of the utility's Percentage of Income Payment Plan (PIPP) to qualify.
Both current program participants and newly eligible accounts will receive a letter in the mail from Vectren Source during the week of March 15th notifying them of the rate reduction and offering them the ability to either "opt-in" or "opt-out" (as applicable) if they so choose. Vectren Source is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Vectren Corp., which offers natural gas products for homes and small businesses in New York, Northern Indiana, and Ohio.
Greg Collins, president of Vectren Source, said his company is happy to continue the good working relationship it has created with the City of Canton's aggregation program. "We're pleased to continue serving the residents of Canton and look forward to growing the program's enrollment," Collins said.
Customers who have questions about the program should call Vectren Source at (866) 200-4793. More information about the City of Canton Natural Gas Aggregation Program can also be found by visiting www.cantonohio.gov/?pg=naturalgas. For more information about Vectren Source, customers should visit www.vectrensource.com.
Law Director, City of Canton
Independent Energy Consultants