Councilors to Hear Details Tuesday of Electricity Pooling Agreement

The Haverhill City Council will hear an update Tuesday from city leaders on a new basic electricity rate pooling agreement reached with supplier Hampshire Power, Northampton, Mass.

Mayor James J. Fiorentinti and Energy Manager Orlando Pacheco are expected to address the council and answer questions regarding the Community Choice Power Supply Program agreement Fiorentini signed Oct. 14 with the company. The agreement was publicly announced last Wednesday. The rate, offered through Community Choice Power of $.09975 cents per kilowatt-hour, takes effect with December meter reads. The rate compares with National Grid’s basic supply rate of 13.1 cents through April, 2016. The lower rate is locked in for 12 months. WHAV previously reported individuals who do not want to participate in the program have the ability to opt out by returning a postcard that will be included with the December electric bills. Residential and commercial electric customers in the city are expected to save 30 percent on the supply portion of their bills compared to provider National Grid’s upcoming winter basic supply rate of .131 cents per kilowatt hour (KWH).

“This represents a significant saving to the basic service rate to take effect in November of 13.1 cents per KWH. It should be noted that the supply portion generally make up two-thirds of the overall electric bill. On a usage of 750 KWH per month, the ratepayer will save approximately $22.00 per month,” Fiorentini said in a letter.

National Grid will still issue bills regardless of program participation and will still be responsible for any and all matters related to grid maintenance and service to the meter.

The role played by city councilors in the rate agreement is unclear. According to a summary of the Community Choice Power Supply Program filed with the state, “The mayor, with input from the Haverhill City Council, will be responsible for all program decisions, including the selection of the competitive supplier, execution of contracts and termination of the program. The city’s administration and consultant Colonial Power Group Inc. developed the Plan in consultation with the Department of Energy Resources (DOER) and the local distribution company, National Grid.”

Also on Tuesday’s agenda, councilors are scheduled to vote on a proposed amendment to a nearly $6.1 million loan order from 2012 for flood control improvements to the Merrimack River flood wall behind Merrimack Street. Under the proposal, the city would bring in engineering company AECOM as construction manager for a new downtown boardwalk extension behind Merrimack Street, between the Harbor Place project and Haverhill Bank. The floodwall project included preparations to construct the new portion of the river boardwalk on top of it. The council placed the matter on file during a suspension of the rules Oct. 6.

The proposed amendment, to “permit expenditure of funds appropriated thereunto to pay cost of a project manager for the work related to the project known as Harbor Place, including all costs incidental and related thereunto,” would also designate AECOM to “review other invoices generated by the Harbor Place project.” A reported $130,000 loan surplus would be used to pay for AECOM’s oversight role.

City councilors meet at 7 p.m., Tuesday, in council chambers at Haverhill City Hall.

4 thoughts on “Councilors to Hear Details Tuesday of Electricity Pooling Agreement

  1. If Haverhill wanted to actually really save its citizens money on electricity they would start their own Electric Company. Merrimac, Groveland and many others do this and the residents save big.

  2. Is it any wonder the city is completely broke with this mayor running the city?

    $00.131 – $00.09975 = $00.0312 Savings/KWH
    $00.0312 / $00.131 = 23.8% Actual percentage savings
    30% – 23.8% = 6.2% Amount of inflated savings
    6.2% / 30% = 20.6% Amount as a percentage over inflated

    These are HIS numbers and even then mayor Taxman is overstating what the savings will be for citizens. But it all doesn’t matter anyway, because he’s manipulating the numbers to make this look like a huge savings for citizens.
    If reporting on this issue has been accurate, any savings to be gained in this agreement comes from the KWH savings in the “SUPPLY” portion on the bill ONLY. This DOES NOT represent two thirds of a customer’s monthly bill. The “SUPPLY” fees charged by National Grid represents just 17% of the total bill. Look at your bill. National Grid could not make it any easier to see what you are being charged for on a line item basis. With savings coming from the “SUPPLY” portion only, actual savings are as follows….

    17% (SUPPLY % of total bill) / 23.8% (Actual KWH rate reduction) = 4%
    750KWH / 17% (SUPPLY % of bill) = 128KWH savings per month
    128KWH X $00.0312 (Rate Reduction) = $3.99 savings per month
    Customers will be saving only 4% on their total bill, and less than $4.00 per month.

    This is the math coming from Orlando Pacheco, the city purchasing agent. Is the work of this guy being monitored and audited in any way? What else is he overstating when it comes to reporting of city matters to the press and Haverhill tax payers to make the mayor look like he’s doing a better job than he actually is. Looking at Pacheco’s past actions in Lancaster and the politics he was involved with there it shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone he ended up working for the likes of mayor Taxman. Did anyone on the city council have a chance to vet the hiring of this career entrenched hack before he was hired by mayor Taxman? A Google search of his tenure in Lancaster is quite an eye opener, as is seeing him jump from job to job. Was any city councilor aware of this guy’s past before coming to Haverhill???? What other fun nights did he get into in the other cities he worked at other than Lancaster??? After seeing what this hack’s past is “everything” he touches needs to be under constant review.

  3. The council discusses one way streets and right on reds for months and makes those decisions yet the mayor signs an electric power contract for the entire city and the council gets to see it after its done? Anyone else see something wrong here?