City of Lancaster Adopts Ordinance to Pursue Community Choice Aggregation, Giving Residents “The Power to Choose”

Lancaster City Hall

Lancaster, CA. May 14, 2014— During last night’s Lancaster City Council meeting, the City Council approved an ordinance declaring the City’s intent to explore establishment of a Community Choice Aggregator (CCA). The program named Lancaster Choice Energy will procure and sell power to Lancaster businesses and residents at competitive rates, while also delivering a consumer-driven mix of energy choices featuring clean energy and local generation. Rates will be set by the City Council, providing for local control and greater accountability.

“We are eager to get this program underway because it empowers our citizens with the ability to choose their energy providers,” said Lancaster Mayor R. Rex Parris. “Price competitive choices will be available, offering a tremendous benefit to residents and business owners who can select which options best meet their needs. Choice Energy will open up the market and be consumer-driven, setting the path for an even brighter energy future for Lancaster residents.”

Southern California Edison (SCE) will continue to provide transmission, distribution, and billing services, as well as hold ownership of all physical power transmission assets. Additionally, power outages and line repairs will continue to be handled by SCE.

One of the most attractive features for residents will be ‘You-tility’, which will provide two energy generating options from which to choose; a renewable energy source for a slightly higher cost and an economy package that maximizes cost-savings. The City will also have the ability to establish specialized economic development rates to aid in business attraction and job creation through the ‘Clear Choice’ program.

The Lancaster City Council will require staff to return before them for final approval as the process progresses and implementation nears. City staff will continue to work with industry experts to further explore and develop the CCA effort. If all goes well and the effort remains favorable; municipal City accounts will transfer to CCA service in May 2015. Commercial availability will be next, followed by residential transfers to CCA service later in 2015.

“The City will be the test case for this program because we want to make sure any potential issues are addressed and dealt with prior to public enrollment,” added Mayor Parris. “We will ensure business owners and residents experience a smooth and successful transition to Choice Energy.”

During the enrollment period, customers will receive a minimum of four notices via mail informing them of their enrollment date and providing details about the Choice Energy program. Customers who wish to remain with SCE can follow a simple opt-out procedure.