How aggregation works
Municipal electricity aggregation is a form of group electricity purchasing. Electricity aggregation replaces your electricity supplier, and it changes the price that National Grid uses to calculate the supply services charges on your electricity bill. In addition, aggregation can increase the amount of renewable energy in your electricity supply. But electricity aggregation does not replace National Grid as your electric utility.
Here’s how it works:
Without Westborough Power Choice
(Unless you already have a contract with an electricity supplier)
Typically, National Grid provides two services to you as an electricity customer, and your electric bill includes charges for both of these services:
|National Grid’s primary role is to deliver your electricity. Their responsibilities also include maintaining the delivery infrastructure (the poles and wires) and addressing power outages. They charge you for these services in the Delivery Services portion of your electric bill.
|National Grid can also provide a second service, which is to supply your electricity. This means they purchase electricity on your behalf and charge you for the amount you use in the Supply Services portion of your electric bill. When National Grid supplies your electricity, their Basic Service price is used to calculate the Supply Services portion of your bill. Basic Service prices change seasonally. When you first open your electricity account, you are placed on National Grid’s Basic Service.
The diagram below shows National Grid both delivering and supplying electricity.
With Westborough Power Choice
In an electricity aggregation like Westborough Power Choice, you remain a National Grid customer. They continue to deliver your electricity, and you continue to call them when the power goes out. They also continue to send your electric bill, and you continue to send bill payments to them.
However, National Grid no longer supplies (buys) your electricity. As a result, you no longer have National Grid’s Basic Service price for the Supply Services portion of your electric bill.
Instead, the Town of Westborough uses the group buying power of the community to sign a contract with an electricity supplier and establish an electricity Supply price for the community. National Grid then uses a Westborough Power Choice price instead of their own Basic Service price to calculate the Supply Service portion of your bill. Westborough Power Choice prices are typically fixed, long-term prices that do not change seasonally.
Through the program, the Town can also choose to buy more electricity from renewable sources than is required by state law. For participants in the Standard Plan and the 100% Green Plan, Westborough buys more renewable electricity than is required by law.
What changes on your bill
If you participate, you will see two changes on your electric bill beginning the month after you are enrolled:
- Westborough’s electricity supplier will be listed on your National Grid bill as your electricity supplier.
- National Grid will use a Westborough Power Choice price to calculate the Supply Services portion of your electric bill instead of their Basic Service price.
What does not change on your bill
Otherwise, your primary relationship for electricity will remain with National Grid. This means:
- You will continue to receive one bill from National Grid. This is the only electric bill you will receive as a participant in Westborough Power Choice.
- You will continue to call National Grid if your power goes out. National Grid will continue to deliver your electricity, restore electricity service after a power outage, and maintain the poles and wires.
- If you have solar panels on your property or participate in a community solar program, you will continue to receive solar credits and/or solar incentive payments, and participating in Westborough Power Choice will not change how they are calculated.
- If you are eligible for a low-income discount, you will continue to receive that discount.
Enrolling in Westborough Power Choice
Westborough Power Choice uses an automatic enrollment model, which is in accordance with state law. New electricity customers in Westborough will be eligible for automatic enrollment in Westborough Power Choice within a few months of opening their electricity account. Before being automatically enrolled, you will receive a notification in the mail from the Town of Westborough with information about the program.
You may also choose to request enrollment. Learn more about requesting enrollment.
Participation is not required. You may opt out before being automatically enrolled or any time after enrollment, with no penalty. If you choose to opt out, National Grid will remain your electricity supplier, and they will use their own Basic Service price to calculate the Supply Services portion of your electric bill.