Governmental Aggregation FAQs
Q: Who is Constellation and where is the company headquartered?
A: Constellation is a leading competitive supplier of power, natural gas and energy products and services for homes and businesses across the United States. Constellation provides integrated energy solutions that help customers buy, manage and use energy, from electricity and natural gas procurement to renewable generation and conservation.
Headquartered in Baltimore, our family of retail businesses serves approximately 2 million residential, public sector and business customers, including three-fourths of the Fortune 100.
Q: What is governmental aggregation?
A: Governmental aggregation is an easy and cost effective way for a large group of residential and small commercial consumers to save money on their electric bills. Some states’ law allows for communities — such as townships, cities and counties — to form aggregated buying groups to purchase electric generation on behalf of their citizens. By bringing citizens together, the aggregation gains group buying power and typically can negotiate a better price with the supplier than each eligible consumer could have received individually. The governmental aggregator chooses the electric generation supplier for all of the eligible members in its group.
Q: Why is my community able to choose a certified competitive supplier on my behalf?
A: Through a public referendum, residents in your community voted to allow your locally elected officials to contract for a competitive supplier on behalf of the community.
Q: What does “Opt-out” mean?
A: Since all eligible residents and small businesses are automatically enrolled in the governmental aggregation program, those who do not want to participate are given the opportunity to opt out. Anyone can choose not to be enrolled as a customer with the community’s competitive supplier by returning the opt-out form — which is included in a letter that is mailed to all eligible customers — by the due date.
Q: How can Constellation offer a lower price than utilities?
A: During select market opportunities Constellation buys power at a lower rate than your utility, thereby passing on savings to our customers.
Q: What stays the same if we choose Constellation?
A: You will continue to receive reliable electric service from your current utility. Electrical service components such as wires and transformers will remain where they are. Physical modifications are not required because electricity is delivered through the same transmission and distribution system owned and operated by your utility. Your current utility will continue to be responsible for delivering electricity, and costs associated with those delivery services will continue to be charged by your current provider. You will also still receive one bill from your current utility, which will include electricity supply charges from Constellation. Your current utility will continue to service all equipment and wires, as well as respond to any power outages.
Q: What are the energy supply choices if my constituents decide to opt out?
A: You can stay with your current electric utility, which will continue to supply your electricity as it always has, or you can shop for a competitive supplier.
Q: What costs will our local government incur?
A: Any costs incurred by local governments are nominal, and generally are associated with including the referendum on the general election ballot. (Note: Should Administrative Service fees be charged by your utility, these charges will be passed onto the supplier; however, there could be exceptions.)
Q: What internal resources will be required to implement and manage a governmental aggregation program?
A: Limited internal resources are required to act as a liaison between the supplier and the GA in the administration and management of the program.
Q: How will we effectively communicate all relevant information regarding the program to our community?
A: Constellation will work with the community to create a comprehensive and personalized outreach campaign as determined by the individual needs of the community. The outcome of the program will create awareness, create engagement through communication of prospective benefits, and promote participation.
Q: What mechanisms are in place to ensure the communication channels between local government and Constellation remain open and uninterrupted?
A: Constellation’s dedicated team of experts is highly accessible. Using a defined communications protocol, government stakeholders will have specific points of contact to ensure that all channels remain open and informed.
Q: How do we get constituents to feel comfortable leaving the local utility that has always provided their power?
A: Constellation will supply your community, at no additional cost, with an educational program to assist you in reassuring your constituents. The program presents the message that although Constellation now supplies the electricity, their local distribution company will continue to deliver the electricity and respond to emergencies.
Q: Why Constellation?
A: More than 100,000 business and public sector customers, including two-thirds of the Fortune 100, have selected us to help strategically manage energy. We provide nearly 1 million residential customers with electricity and natural gas plans that can provide price protection, savings and environmental opportunities. In addition to a highly competitive price product offering, Constellation is uniquely positioned to provide full-service energy solutions in the form of ancillary products such as energy risk management, load response and energy efficiency programs designed to meet the specific needs of the governmental aggregation communities that we serve. To ensure that your energy strategy best conforms to the needs of your aggregated buying group, choose Constellation today.