ATTICA - North Central Electric members in Big Spring and Clinton townships may help decide electric aggregation issues Nov. 5 but would not benefit should the measures pass in their respective townships, according to a cooperative spokesman.
"We are not opposed to electric aggregation," said Terry Mazzone, North Central's director of communications and community relations. "We are concerned the ballot language does not make it clear to the voter that electric aggregation only
affects those consumers served by American Electric Power."
While possible under state law for customers of investor-owned utilities, the authority to aggregate electric loads does not extend to those served by nonprofit electric cooperatives or municipal electric systems. North Central, based in Attica, and AEP each provide electric service to Big Spring and Clinton townships.
Mazzone said over the last several years, Ohio electric cooperatives have worked with the Ohio secretary of state on electric aggregation ballot language that states aggregation efforts only affect "retail electric loads served by for-profit electric suppliers."
"Unfortunately, no one bothers to check to see if townships served by (investor-owned utilities) are also served by not-for-profit electric cooperatives or municipal electric systems when they are writing ballot language for electric aggregation issues," he said.
"We were pleased to see the elected officials of both Big Spring and Clinton townships are making sure to tell residents that electric aggregation only affects those residents served by AEP," Mazzone said. "If North Central Electric members choose to potentially help their neighbors save on their electric bills by voting for aggregation, we have no problem with that. We just want to make sure cooperative members in Big Spring and Clinton townships know they will not be able to participate if their aggregation issue is approved."