Haverhill Councilors Hear Details About City’s Pending Switch to Outside Electricity Provider

Energy Consultant Orlando Pacheco. (WHAV News file photograph.)

Haverhill city councilors this week passed along what they learned about potential household savings when the city switches residents in December to a new electricity supplier.

As WHAV first reported Sept. 28, residents have until Monday Oct. 26 to “opt out” of the program if they choose. Orlando Pacheco, Haverhill’s energy consultant, explained the new plan.

“It is the same program as the city had where we are doing a bulk supply purchase in the open market for those customers who are on basic service with the utility, but certainly provides what we think will be stability and also savings, particularly in the winter months, to Haverhill ratepayers,” Pacheco told councilors.

Back in 2015, the city contracted with supplier Hampshire Power, of Northampton to supply Haverhill residents and businesses already on National Grid’s default plan. When the utility’s basic rates became competitive, the city quietly dropped its “aggregation” program.

Pacheco said one of the problems that occurred after the last program shut down was door-to-door salespersons luring customers, particularly low-income residents, with a very low rate that lasted only a short while and then skyrocketed. He said the new program protects those consumers.

He added residents may visit Colonial’s Haverhill web page at colonialpowergroup.com/Haverhill to compare prices. Pacheco said while rates do fluctuate and vary by the amount of electricity used, an average family could see a savings of up to $288 in the course of a year.

According to its website, Colonial Power Group has similar arrangements with Methuen, North Andover, Newburyport, Salisbury and Lowell.

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