Austintown residents will pay less than average for natural gas through a 12-month aggregation program.
AUSTINTOWN — Beginning in October, township residents will be able to heat their homes for a rate of $10.64 per Mcf (per 1,000 cubic feet).
The 12-month fixed rate on natural gas will be available from October 2008 to September 2009 for members of Austintown’s aggregation program, which is supplied by Vectren Source.
Township Administrator Michael Dockry said residents and businesses now enrolled in the program or supplied by Dominion East Ohio will automatically receive the rate unless they choose to opt-out.
“Residents should expect to receive an opt-out notice from Vectren Source in the second week in September,” he said.
Dockry said those who are served by another supplier can join the aggregation program by contacting Vectren Source at (866) 224-7163.
Township Trustee David Ditzler said participation is 100 percent voluntary, but residents seem to prefer it.
The program “appears to be popular with our residents, as participation rates remain high,” he said. “The trustees are pleased to offer this program to our residents as another option in their attempts to manage increasing energy costs.”
Mark Burns, president of Independent Energy Consultants Inc., said his company helps the local government identify and negotiate with suppliers and choose the provider with the lowest cost.
“The whole concept is to put together a large buying group,” he said. “A supplier would provide a lower rate to a big buying group than they would to an individual customer.”
Burns said a resident who chooses to seek out a rate on his or her own would pay an average of $12.40 to $12.70 per Mcf.