Friday, November 29, 2013
The City of Georgetown has purchased the electricity it sell to its customers from Santee Cooper for years. And it will continue to do so for at least the next decade.
Last week, Georgetown City Council agreed to approve a new ten-year contract with the utility that is expected to save the city money over the life of the contract.
Santee Cooper was one of five power companies that responded to the city’s requests for proposals earlier this year. The others were SCE&G, Duke Power, Southern Power and Piedmont Municipal Power.
Alan Loveless, the head of the city’s electric utilities, said he is pleased with the deal that was reached. Since the city has long done business with Santee Cooper, he said it was coming out of the city’s comfort zone to seek proposals from other companies. It was done, Loveless said, to make sure city residents are getting the best deal possible on electricity.
Loveless said customers will likely not see a rate decrease but, he said, if the deal had not been reached, the city would have had to increase rates.
The city has operated a municipal electric utility since 1921 and now serves about 3,800 residential customers and about 1,200 commercial customers.
Santee Cooper will be paid a base price of $104 million over the life of the contract. That is nearly $10 million less than the bid submitted by the second place company.
Santee Cooper has also agreed to assist residents with high electric bills find out why the rates are high by testing their homes to determine where heat and air conditioning is leaking from the structure.