Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Acton Power Choice program?

The program is an electricity aggregation, a form of group purchasing in which the Town uses the bulk buying power of the entire community to negotiate a price for the electricity supply portion of your Eversource electric bill.

Your Eversource electric bill has two categories of charges, delivery charges and supply charges. Delivery charges are for bringing electricity to you along wires and maintaining the electricity delivery infrastructure. Supply charges are for the purchase of the electricity itself.

As the local electric utility, Eversource is responsible for electricity delivery in Acton. In addition, Eversource is also typically the electricity supplier, meaning they buy electricity and pass that cost along to you. (When Eversource is your electricity supplier, the service you have is called Eversource Basic Service.)

Within Acton Power Choice, Eversource will continue to deliver your electricity, but Eversource will no longer be your electricity supplier. Instead, Acton will choose an electricity supplier for Town residents and businesses through a competitive bid process.

Acton has entered into a contract with Dynegy to supply electricity to the Town through September 2019.

I received a call/visit/letter in the mail about my electric bill. Is it from the Town or this program?

The Acton Power Choice program will send a single communication in the mail about this program. That letter will go only to Eversource Basic Service customers. It will not go to electricity customers that have already signed a contract with an electricity supplier.

How to identify this letter: The return address on the envelope will include the Town name, the Town seal, and the name and address for Dynegy. The letter itself will include the Town seal and will have Town Manager Steve Ledoux’s name at the end.

Any other letter, phone call, or visit that you receive about your electricity does not represent the Acton Power Choice program.

The Town is not sending additional letters, knocking on doors, or making individual sales phone calls.
If Eversource is your electricity supplier, you will be automatically enrolled in the program. You do not need to provide additional information to participate. Any person or company who asks for additional information does not represent the Acton Power Choice program.
If you receive a call or a visit from someone who wants to discuss your electricity, here are three things to keep in mind:
  • The person you are speaking with is not associated with the Town of Acton or the Acton Power Choice program.
  • You should treat your Eversource account number like you treat your credit card information. Do not give it out unless you want to purchase your electricity from someone else.
  • You do have the right to select an electricity supplier of your choice. If you choose to explore this option, please check the terms of the agreement carefully. Things to check for include: minimum bill amounts, contract length requirements, early termination fees, low introductory rates that change after the introductory period ends, and rates that vary.
What will my electricity supply price be with this program?

The program offers two clean-energy alternatives to Eversource Basic Service:

Power Choice Standard is 10.720 ¢/kWh for all customers/rate classes. This choice includes 17% renewable energy from renewable energy projects in New England instead of the 12% minimum required by the state. Beginning with September 2017 meter reads, Eversource Basic Service customers will be automatically enrolled in Power Choice Standard.

Power Choice Green 12.712 ¢/kWh for all customers/rate classes. This choice provides 100% renewable energy, all from projects in New England. You may select Power Choice Green by calling Dynegy at 1-866-220-5696.

 

How much money will I save? Are savings guaranteed?

In other communities, average customer savings have ranged between approximately $20 and $7 a year.

However, while the program strives to provide savings, savings cannot be predicted or guaranteed.

This is because the program price is fixed until September 2019, while Eversource Basic Service prices change twice a year or more, depending on rate class. As a result, the program price may not always be below the Eversource Basic Service price. The program aims to deliver savings when compared with the average of the changing Basic Service prices.

Please note that any savings will apply only to the supplier services portion of your Evesource electric bill. Delivery charges will be unaffected by the Acton Power Choice program.

How long will the program last? What will happen after September 2019?

Acton has signed a contract with Dynegy, which will be in effect from September 2017 meter reads until September 2019 meter reads.

As the contract nears its end, if the program is going well, Acton can solicit bids for a new electricity supply contract. If a new contract is signed, all customers that are active in the program at that time will be automatically enrolled into the new contract.

If the Town chooses not to sign a new contract, the program will end, and participants will be returned automatically to Eversource Basic Service.

What will change with this program?

You will see two changes as a result of participating in Acton Power Choice:

  • On the Supplier Services portion of your Eversource electric bill, you will see Dynegy listed instead of Eversource as your electricity supplier.
  • The rate that you are charged for supplier services will change from the Basic Service rate to the Acton Power Choice rate.

Otherwise, everything else will remain the same. You will continue to receive your bill from Eversource, you will continue to pay Eversource, and you will continue to call Eversource when your power goes out.

If you are eligible for a low-income discount, or you receive net metering credits for solar panels, those benefits will not be affected by your participation in the Acton Power Choice program.

How do I join the program?

Accounts on Eversource Basic Service will be automatically enrolled in the program.

If you already have an agreement with an electricity supplier, you will not be automatically enrolled in the program. However, you can join the program by calling Dynegy at 1-866-220-5696 and asking to be enrolled.

  • If you wish to wait until the end of your current electricity supply contract and then join the program, you may do so. You will receive the program price whenever you join.
  • If you wish to cancel your current electricity supply contract and join the program, you may do that as well. Most suppliers recommend that you call 10 days before your meter read.

Before you terminate an existing contract with an electricity supplier, we recommend that you check the terms of your contract. Many include minimum enrollment periods and early termination fees.

Do I have to participate?

You do not have to participate and can opt out. There is no penalty for opting out. You may do so at any time. If you opt out, the supply portion of your bill will remain on Eversource’s Basic Service rate.

You will have three ways to opt out before program launch: 1) You will receive a letter in the mail notifying you of your right to opt out of the program. You may opt out by signing and returning the reply card that accompanies that letter. 2) You may opt out by calling Dynegy at 1-866-220-5696. 3) You may opt out online.

After program launch, you will have two ways to opt out: 1) You may opt out by calling Dynegy at 1-866-220-5696. 2) You may opt out online.

 

I have already signed my own contract with an electricity supplier? Can I participate?

If you have already signed a contract with an electricity supplier, you will not automatically be enrolled in Acton Power Choice. But you are welcome to join.

If you would like to participate in Acton Power Choice, we recommend that you first check the terms of your existing electricity supply contract. Many include minimum enrollment periods and early termination fees.

To participate in Acton Power Choice, call Dynegy at 1-866-220-5696 and ask to be enrolled.

Who do I call when the power goes out?

Eversource will continue to deliver  your electricity and maintain the poles and wires. Call Eversource if your power goes out, as always.

Will I receive a second bill?

No. Eversource will continue to bill you for your electricity, and this is the only electricity bill you will receive as a participant in Acton Power Choice.

Will Eversource provide me with a lower quality of service because I participate in this program?

No. Eversource’s quality of service to you will be unaffected by your participation in the Acton Power Choice program. Eversource does not profit from the supply charges on your electric bill. They make their profit from delivery charges. As a result, they have no preference whether they choose your supplier or Acton does.

What if Eversource's price falls below the program price?

The Acton Power Choice price is fixed until September 2019. Eversource Basic Service prices change every six months or less, depending on what kind of customer you are. As a result, it is likely that for some months, the Eversource price will fall below the program price. The program goal is to beat the average of the changing Eversource prices.

If the Eversource price does fall below the program price, you are free to opt out of the program and return to Eversource Basic Service.

I am currently eligible for the low-income delivery rate from Eversource. Will this change?

No. If you are eligible for a low-income discount from Eversource, it will unaffected by your participation in Acton Power Choice.

I have budget billing from Eversource. Will this change?

Yes. If you join the Acton Power Choice program, budget billing will no longer apply to the supply portion of your Eversource bill. However, budget billing will continue to apply to the delivery portion of your bill.

I have solar panels on my property. If I join the program, will I continue to receive net metering credits?

Yes. Net metering will work the same way if you participate in the program. Your net metering credits from your solar panels will continue to appear on your Eversource bill and will continue to be calculated based on Eversource’s Basic Service price, not the program price.

Will I be enrolled if I am on Eversource's Do Not Call list?

No. If you have added your name to Eversource’s Do Not Call list, your account will not receive any mailings about the program, and your account will not be automatically enrolled. But you may participate if you wish. To participate, you will need to contact Dynegy at 1-866-220-5696 and ask to be enrolled.

Is Acton the only community in Massachusetts creating this kind of program?

No. Municipal electricity aggregation has been building momentum across Massachusetts. Acton will be joining more nearly 100 other Massachusetts communities that already have active aggregations, communities such as Cambridge, Lexington, Salem, Natick, Chelmsford, Swampscott, Greenfield, Westborough, the communities of the Cape, and many others.