Brian Pugh: CCA is People Power

To the Editor:

October marks the 5th month of the Westchester Power Program, a form of Community Choice Aggregation (CCA) established by Westchester communities through the nonprofit consortium, Sustainable Westchester. But even as communities across New York State look to join the 1300+ municipalities participating in a CCA program, including our neighbors in Bedford and Hastings, the Village of Croton is left behind.

That’s because the Croton United majority on the Village Board voted against CCA.

The mayor and his allies on the Board rejected CCA even though their own party’s treasurer, Joel Gingold, told the Board, “I believe the more likely outcome is that the program will offer modest, but real, savings to those who agree to participate. Perhaps more importantly, it will offer customers who so choose, the option to obtain all of their electricity from renewable sources (wind, solar, hydro, etc.).”

Indeed, time has vindicated Mr. Gingold and supporters of CCA. Communities participating in Westchester Power, such as Ossining and Hastings, have been able to receive power from 100% renewable sources and paid less than what they would have under the standard Con Edison plan.

Over time, savings for communities participating in Westchester Power are likely to grow with time. Westchester Power locked in a fixed rate for electric power at the start of this year lower than the 2015 Con Edison average. The US Energy Information Agency expects electricity prices to rise going into 2017. Communities did not participate, like Croton, will be left exposed.

As your Village Trustee, I will continue to work diligently for an environmental and economic sustainability. If the Croton United party administration chooses to join this coalition for conservation, I will be the first to thank them.

Sincerely,

Brian Pugh

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