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Point Boro OKs Energy Options Search

Residents who sell energy as a business seek chance to pitch proposals to council

The search for a is on.

Acting on the notion that residents could save money on their electric bills by letting officials choose a utility to serve the whole town, the accepted a resolution to start comparison shopping for a new electric company.

By switching from JCP&L to one of the smaller energy companies now doing business in the state, residents could save an estimated 10 to 15 percent on their home electric bills according to

The resolution to begin looking for energy agents and energy consultants towards developing a public-private partnership with a utility was unanimously approved by the four council members present at Tuesday night's meeting at

Through competitive bidding, the council expects to narrow down the field of prospective energy providers to one company that can give residents the biggest bang for its buck. 

With the wheels now in motion, Point Pleasant is poised to become the first Ocean County municipality to select an alternative energy provider to serve both government offices and residents,

"The county [government] has been doing this. School boards are doing it," Dasti said. "They're saving 10 to 15 percent." 

Any resident preferring to keep JCP&L or another electric provider of their choice may do so, Council President Antoinette DePaola said.

"The borough will not mandate a homeowner to use our energy provider," DePaola said. "A homeowner can opt out of the program."

However, the council need only look in its backyard to find residents who are sales representatives for two separate alternate energy providers.

Those residents are concerned that the provider ultimately selected by the council will take customers away from them. 

, an independent sales consultant for , a Norwalk, Connecticut green energy provider, questioned the council about why it was acting as the middle man at all.

"I understand that we're looking for a way to save money. I don't understand why the borough should be the one to do this," Constantino said.

The council ought to see if it could partner with other municipalities in its quest for better utility rates, the Maple Street resident said.

Energy sales consultants like himself might end up loosing customers in the end, he noted.

"You'll make it tougher for dealers to live here," Constantino said. "I don't feel that [dealers] should be competing with the borough."

, who are independent consultants for Ambit Energy, advised the council that their Texas-based company not only offers savings, but invites users to work in the industry as well.

"We offer the individual the chance to save money, to work with us as a representative and to earn energy by referring others to us," Wayde Weisleder said.

"We don't want the town to take business away from us," Toni Weisleder said. "We'd like to offer our program to the residents."

Municipalities are now allowed to aggregate their residents' home energy needs and seek a townwide energy supplier through competitive bidding, thanks to state legislation that deregulated the state's utility industry.

The state law also provides for residents in a town that contracts with an alternate energy provider to remain with New Jersey Natural Gas or any other utility if they choose to do so.

Businesses and school districts are allowed to join in the municipal programs on their own. 

 

 

 

 

 

Tom March 21, 2012 at 05:22 PM
This is a common sense proposal. A no brainer, in my opinion. It's good to see "point pleasant" and "first in the county" used in the same sentence in a positive way. I hope the governing body continues to think outside the box and keep looking for cost savings measures.
Chris Constantino March 21, 2012 at 10:20 PM
Would be nice if some of the basic inside the box stuff was done too... ;)
Craig March 22, 2012 at 05:38 PM
Craig Seems there should be a referendum in November if recommended by Council to proceed, since this will create a burden for residents to opt out.
Margaret R March 22, 2012 at 07:15 PM
For those gentlemen that have voiced concerns over the possible loss of income due to thinking outside the box, seems to me this is the perfect opportunity to step up and consider having their Energy employer submit a proposal to our town. Rather than whine about a very modern and probably trend setting, money saving program, go for it, your never know might actually move you up the ladder in your employment.
Chris Constantino March 22, 2012 at 09:06 PM
Craig's idea is perfect. Put it to referendum...a binding one. Let the people decide that it’s ok for the Boro to make its decisions for them things around the house. And there was no whining...voicing an opinion and a concern over spending my tax dollars to potentially compete against me and others, forcing me into something that I may not be interested in, and the fact that our elected officials should be focused on municipal government. See you at the next meeting Margaret.
Tom March 23, 2012 at 11:37 PM
Chris...maybe you haven't been paying close enough attention...but the "basic inside the box stuff" IS getting done. Did our town not avoid borrowing $800,000 in LARGE part due to the insistence of Remig Sabosik and Depaola last year? Now...we hired a Boro auditor for 30% cheaper than the previous one. Speaking of Fallon, did we ever get the AFF which was due in February? No. There is cost savings and increased efficiency at every turn, admit it or not
Sean Conneamhe July 23, 2012 at 05:54 PM
"Sounds like a program worth investigating."

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