Community Power Programs Now Taking Form

I want to congratulate the towns of Marlborough, Keene, Swanzey and Wilton for forming an electrical power buying group. This is great news for the consumer. The wisdom of former Mayor Michael E.J. Blastos has finally been realized and I am proud to have served on that Energy and Climate Committee.

The Cheshire County Community Power (CCP) electric energy plan (EAP) was recently approved by the PUC and we are weighing our options to; 1) get the lowest and most sustainable rates to power our facilities in Keene, Swanzey and Westmoreland; and 2) establish rules for towns within Cheshire County to join the CCP plan.

The state’s Community Power law allows towns in Cheshire County to piggy-back onto the CCP plan without having to establish their own EAP’s, and still realize the buying power of the entire Community Power Coalition of New Hampshire (CPCNH) load bank. The rates of that load bank will be announced at a press conference scheduled for Monday, March 13 at 3pm in Concord to announce electric rates for it’s first wave of towns that include Harrisville, Walpole and Peterborough in the Monadnock Region.

Because of the market confusion last year, Cheshire County scrambled to find a competitive rate that would protect us from the huge rate increase. We entered into an agreement – which has saved the County 35% in electrical costs – with Freedom Energy that ends this fall. We are currently looking into a transition strategy to join into CPCNH’s plan that promises to save us even more and could take effect sometime this summer.

I also want to thank the members of the Monadnock Energy Hub, Clean Energy NH and local community energy committees for their tireless efforts to promote the concept of community power in the Monadnock Region. Together we will bring sustainable, affordable and resilient energy sources to power our communities for decades into the future.

Terry M. Clark
Cheshire County Commissioner


I am running for re-election

My name is Terry Clark and I am running for re-election as county commissioner representing Keene, Marlborough and Roxbury.

Two years ago, I promised to work on regionalization of county/town concerns because I believe we can most efficiently address regional issues as a team. Since then, we have faced the ambulance crisis and formed the Cheshire Emergency Medical Services Department that will launch in mid-November.

Also, the County has long been a proponent of energy efficiency – completing upgrade projects that have already saved 500kw of energy per year. In addition to that, I am a director of The Community Power Coalition of NH that will bring lower-than-utility cost energy into the county with a Community Power Program that will allow towns and their residents to share in those savings.

I hope to continue expanding regional cooperation between county towns to bridge the silos that duplicate efforts and tax dollars, better utilized by sharing information and resources. The County has the statutory authority to act as an arbiter between towns and regional interests and should be utilized wherever possible to achieve common regional goals at lower costs than can be realized by individual towns.

The short answer is that we will work to provide a superior service to taxpayers at a lower price.

My top priorities for the next term are to:

Maintain a professional working atmosphere at County facilities that will help employees succeed at their jobs, and attract future employees to maintain nursing, correctional and other staff levels in this very competitive market;

Utilize our Grants Department to find alternative funding for projects, and use managerial strategies that will keep a high level of services to the taxpayer at the lowest possible cost. Just one example is our recent effort to fund the sheriff’s $2.9 million communications equipment upgrade almost entirely without taxpayer funds;

Successfully role out the Cheshire Community Power Plan, saving money on electricity for County facilities, County towns and their residents. This plan is being integrated with our ongoing energy conservation and modernization projects.

I would appreciate your vote for another term as your county commissioner on November 8th.