Stark County residents participating in gas aggregation saved $16 million since 2009

By Laurie Huffman | Dix Communications Published:

Residents participating in the Stark County Natural Gas Aggregation Program have saved $16 million since 2009, according to a presentation given to the county commissioners during regular session on Wednesday. The information was shared by Mark Burns, president of Independent Energy Consultants, who said his agency received bids from five different suppliers before choosing to remain with the current provider for another two years in order to give participants a lower rate than they currently have and a much better rate than they could get on their own. Residents are now paying $4.64 per mcf. Letters will go out to current participants letting them know they can opt out of the program, and also to nonparticipants explaining to them how they can participate in the program to get a lower fixed rate. There are currently 1,500 Columbia Gas customers who participate, along with 23,500 Dominion customers.

Other business included approval of a $50,000 appropriation to the sheriff's office for its jailhouse drug and alcohol recovery program.

Resolutions were approved authorizing Job and Family Services to enter into agreements with Crisis Intervention & Recovery Center Inc. for screening of referral information relative to suspected child or elder abuse or neglect on weekends, holidays and after regular hours at a cost of $15,071 for the period of July 1 through Sept. 30, 2104 and with Mental Health and Recovery Services Board of Stark County and the Stark County Children's Network for a family engagement specialist to work with families that have experienced trauma in the amount of $8,333 for the period of July 1 through Aug. 30.

A bid was accepted from Canton Business Machines for maintenance of the county's computers, monitors and printers at a cost of $60,000 per year, effective Sept. 1.

Travel was approved as follows: One Adult Probation employee, $104, management seminar in Akron; two commissioners employees, $35, CCAO seminar in Wadsworth; two JFS employees, $258, statewide exposition in Columbus; two JFS employees, $941, Bring a Child Back to Stark County event in Chicago; two JFS employees, $653, When Words Matter Seminar in Columbus; one JFS employee, $546, Ohio Human Resource seminar in Sandusky; one Records employee, $35, Ohio Historical Record Advisory meeting in Columbus; one Sanitary Engineer's employee, $125, Wastewater Exam in Columbus; two Veterans employees, $1,550, New Service Officer Training in Dublin.

A resolution was adopted approving plans, specifications and cost estimates for a backup generator replacement in the Sanitary Engineer's facility at 1701 Mahoning Road N.E. estimated to cost $137,070.

Enviroscapes was approved by the board to perform yearly maintenance on the two Zimber Ditch drainage basins in Canton at a cost of $6,919. Maintenance includes cleaning litter, mowing, and cleaning any sediment, debris and rock that accumulates.

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