N.Y. Gov. Vetoes Municipal Aggregation Pilot Bill, But "Supports Intent"
January 5, 2015 Email This Story Copyright 2010-15 EnergyChoiceMatters.com
Reporting by Paul Ring • firstname.lastname@example.org
Several days after the New York PSC issued an order establishing a process to review enabling communities to engage in opt-out municipal aggregation, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo in late December vetoed a bill which would have allowed Westchester County to operate an opt-out aggregation on a pilot basis, stating that the issue was better addressed at the PSC.
The bill, S5500-D, would have established a five year pilot municipal energy aggregation program for residential or "small non-residential" customers receiving electric and/or gas service from New York State Electric & Gas Corporation or Consolidated Edison of New York, Inc., in Westchester County.
"I support the intent of this bill; however the legislation would deprive PSC of the flexibility to implement any changes necessary to benefit or protect the aggregation program, in general, and customers, in particular," Cuomo said in the veto.
"Equally as troubling, the bill fails to prohibit aggregators, administrators, or energy service companies from using customer lists and data received through the program for other purposes, including for advertising unrelated products and services. In addition, the bill does not provide for renewably-sourced energy options. Finally, the bill prescribes very specific standards for contracts used in the aggregation program that cannot be changed without legislative action, thus hindering or even preventing the delivery of intended benefits," Cuomo said.
"[The] PSC has already opened a proceeding to enable community choice aggregation across New York to benefit residential and small commercial customers and lower energy costs. This bill would, in some respects, duplicate those efforts and, in other respects, undermine those efforts," Cuomo said.