Welcome to Laurie Goodman's blog. I use this space to share news and opinions about education and schools in Ridgewood, the state of New Jersey and the nation, in addition to other issues I'm personally interested in. I invite you to share your thoughts, feelings, questions or opinions, too, by posting comments on any blog entry. Please observe basic courtesy -- keep your comments focused on issues, no personal attacks or bullying, please. Contact me directly at: lauriegood@mac.com

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Ridgewood saves on energy by buying with other districts

Just wanted to let you know about one of our programs to save money. Here's a report today on the energy-purchasing consortium of which Ridgewood is a part:

Shared Electricity Purchase Will Save Schools, Taxpayers $36 Million

FOLSOM, NJ, March 11, 2009—Some 400 New Jersey school districts will save a total of $36 million in electricity costs over the next two years as a result of an agreement developed by an energy-buying cooperative headed by the New Jersey School Boards Association. The contract, finalized this month, represents the largest group energy purchasing agreement in the state.

South Jersey Energy, a subsidiary of South Jersey Industries [NYSE:SJI], was the successful bidder for less costly electricity in a search conducted by the Alliance for Competitive Energy Services (ACES), the school district buying cooperative sponsored by the New Jersey School Boards Association, the New Jersey Association of School Administrators and the New Jersey Association of School Business Officials.

“The ACES agreement is a prime example of how local school districts are working together to share services,” said Marie S. Bilik, NJSBA executive director. “By reducing energy costs, the agreement will enable public schools to direct more of their available funds to the classroom. In some districts, the savings could help to maintain important education programs; in others, the reduced costs could alleviate some of the burden placed on local property taxpayers.”

Under the terms of the contract, SJE will supply 2.5 million megawatts hours of electricity, which equals all of the electricity requirements for the ACES member school districts. The $36 million savings represents the difference between the ACES contract and the costs of electric generation normally charged by the districts’ utility companies

Founded in 1999, the Alliance for Competitive Energy is a joint energy-purchasing program for schools sponsored by the New Jersey School Boards Association, the New Jersey Association of School Business Officials and the New Jersey Association of School Administrators. ACES retained and authorized Gabel Associates, a New Jersey based energy, environmental and public utility consulting firm, to administer the ACES electric generation service aggregation program.

ACES also provides a natural gas aggregation program to over 280 schools districts in New Jersey.

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