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Feb. 16, 2005

Oswego County Approves Low-Cost Power to Three Companies

Oswego County's Public Utility Service Board has approved its first allocations of low-cost power to three Oswego County businesses. Over the next five years the Public Utility Service will allocate up to 10 megawatts of low-cost power, generated at the James A. Fitzpatrick Nuclear Power Plant in Scriba, to new and expanding businesses in the county that are creating or retaining jobs.

The power is made available through a PILOT agreement with Entergy Nuclear Northeast, owner of the FitzPatrick plant. Entergy will provide up to 10 megawatts of electricity a year, at $32 per megawatt-hour, between 2005 and 2010. By comparison, customers in the open market during January 2005 paid over $59 per megawatt-hour to purchase power from a New York independent system operator in the "day-ahead" market.

The board approved minimum amounts that will retain 84 existing jobs and create two new jobs at the following businesses:

  • Great Lakes Veneer, Oswego, 45 kilowatts. Great Lakes Veneer is a hardwood lumber manufacturer and hardwood veneer log reseller. The allocation helps them to hire two new positions and retain 43 jobs.
  • Acro-Fab Ltd., Hannibal, 10 kilowatts. Acro-Fab is a precision sheet metal fabrication and machine shop. The allocation will assist them to retain 22 jobs.
  • Fulton Tool Company, Fulton, 12 kilowatts. Fulton Tool makes precision machine parts and provides machining services. The firm will retain 19 jobs.

To be eligible for Oswego County's low-cost power, businesses must meet certain minimum usage requirements and commit to retain or create permanent new jobs. The criteria for the program are modeled after the New York Power Authority's Power for Jobs program. Preference is given to businesses that are not eligible for other low-cost power programs. The Public Utility Service Board reviews applications and selects eligible businesses.

"The board is very appreciative of the companies that have taken advantage of this opportunity for low-cost power," said board chairman Andrew Curran Jr. of Hannibal. "We would encourage new and expanding businesses in Oswego County to make their applications quickly, so that we can take full advantage of the potential for this program."

County Legislature Vice Chairman Greg Osetek, an ex-officio member of the board, said that applicants are asked to provide detailed information about the new project they are undertaking, their job creation plans, and their power usage requirements.

"I believe I speak on behalf of all of my colleagues on the Oswego County Legislature when I express appreciation for the hard work displayed by the Oswego County Public Utility Services Board and their ability to establish the policies by which our low-cost power allocation program will operate," said Legislator Osetek, District 15, Oswego. "I encourage businesses to investigate this new and innovative opportunity."

Unallocated power may be used by local governments and school districts to save on their energy costs. Oswego County is already using some of the low-cost power in its county facilities. The board also approved initial allocations to the Village of Mexico, Village of Central Square, and Town of Schroeppel. All municipalities and school districts in Oswego County have been invited to participate.

"This program is creating jobs and saving taxpayers' money by offering power at a rate well below the market rate. There are many more applications in progress, and the board looks forward to receiving them," said Legislator Osetek.

Oswego County has contracted with Select Energy of Syracuse to administer the low-cost energy program. Businesses, municipalities and school districts that are interested in applying should contact Select Energy through its agent, Natural Gas Business Associates of Liverpool, phone 453-2482.

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