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Batavia council hires firm to help with sale of electricity

Published: Tuesday, April 2, 2013 6:43 p.m. CDT • Updated: Tuesday, April 2, 2013 11:31 p.m. CDT

BATAVIA – The Batavia City Council has hired a firm to help the city with the possible sale of excess electricity.

Batavia aldermen on Monday voted 12-2 to approve a contract not to exceed $50,000 with Morrill and Associates, which will help the city with legislative matters related to the sale. Voting “no” were 2nd Ward Alderman Victor Dietz and 6th Ward Alderman Lisa Clark.

The city has looked at selling off some of its power because it doesn’t need as much as expected because of the economic slowdown. In 2007, the Northern Illinois Municipal Power Agency, of which Batavia is a member, agreed to a long-term power contract to purchase electricity from the Prairie State Energy Campus in downstate Illinois.

Other members include Geneva and Rochelle. Last October, NIMPA facilitated the proposed sale of up to 50 megawatts of power allocated to Batavia under its current agreement with Prairie State. The proposed sale was terminated in January after there was little interest from potential buyers.

As part of its agreement with the city, Morrill and Associates plans to encourage the passage and enactment of legislation that would either allow Batavia, as a home-rule community, to sell a portion of the power it receives from Prairie State at the retail level to consumers outside of its municipal borders, or allow NIMPA to sell the electric power it receives from Prairie State at the retail level.

In 2007, when Batavia approved buying power from the plant, it was projected that Batavia’s electrical system would experience significant growth.

In early 2011, the city retained Pace Global Energy Services to re-examine its overall energy portfolio strategy. Pace recommended the city explore diversification.

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