Earlier this month, voters in 22 Ohio communities weighed in on whether to allow their municipality to purchase their electricity on behalf of residents. This is known as community choice aggregation (CCA). More than 250 communities across the state have adopted CCA as their energy purchasing model.
In 1999, Ohio law changed to enable utility customers to choose an electricity supplier separately from their utility. This has allowed communities across the state to opt out of direct service from the local utility and instead choose their electricity supplier. In places that have made the switch, nearly 60% of customers have chosen to switch to from their utility to an alternate supplier.
There are a number of reasons why localities would opt for obtaining their electricity through community choice aggregation. It allows local control over where their electricity comes from. It gives them the option to procure electricity from a clean power source. It may also enable the community to pay less for the electricity they consume.
There are two ways communities can participate in CCA. They can offer residents a contract for electricity service. This is known as “opt-in”. Or, municipalities can automatically sign up all residents for a service the community has chosen, with the option for residents to decline the contract. This is known as “opt-out”. Communities choosing to go through CCA through the opt-out model must get approval from a majority of voters, hence the 22 different measures across the state this November.
Voters supported moving to CCA in just over half of the questions. The largest of these communities was the city of Worthington. Voters in the city of 14,000 approved the measure with 75% support. Voter approval means that these communities will now work with energy providers to negotiate a contract for their community’s residents. Complete results can be found in the table below.
|Location||Votes for||Votes against||Total||Percent for||Percent against||Passed?|
|East Union Township||780||781||1561||49.97%||50.03%||No|