County Executives and APGA Offer Assistance to Communities Interested in Establishing a Public Gas Utility

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The American Public Gas Association (APGA) and County Executives of America (CEA) joined in reaching out to communities in the Midwest, North and Northeast to highlight opportunities the production of shale gas may present to their community. This was done with the belief that having a locally owned utility is an important venture for a community providing both jobs and a valuable service at affordable rates.

The low price of natural gas and extremely positive domestic supply picture we have for the future translate in tremendous opportunities and benefits for communities that are currently not served by a natural gas system.

Back in May, the American Public Gas Association (APGA) and County Executives of America (CEA) joined in reaching out to communities in the Midwest, North and Northeast to highlight opportunities the production of shale gas may present to their community. We believe that having a locally owned utility is an important venture for a community providing both jobs and a valuable service at affordable rates. If you are interested in learning more, a copy of the letter is available on the APGA website at http://www.apga.org.

The production of shale gas from areas not formerly known for their natural gas reserves, such as Ohio and Pennsylvania, presents an opportunity for communities that currently do not have natural gas service to consider the merits of creating a public gas system. As communicated in the letter, establishing a public gas system can provide their businesses and homeowners with clean, affordable, and efficient natural gas. The letter also communicates the economic and local control benefits a public gas system can provide and offers assistance to those communities should they have an interest in pursuing the creation of a public gas system.

CEA Executive Director, Michael Griffin, stated that “The low price of natural gas and extremely positive domestic supply picture we have for the future translate in tremendous opportunities and benefits for communities that are currently not served by a natural gas system. Taking the initiative in creating a public gas system is the logical next step towards providing a community with clean, efficient and affordable natural gas. CEA is pleased to work with the APGA towards providing communities with the information they need to determine whether creating a public gas system is the right choice for them.”

APGA’s President & CEO, Bert Kalisch, communicated that “Establishing a public gas system provides a community with local control over how gas is provided to homes and businesses. One of the benefits of public gas systems is that decisions are made locally through citizen participation instead of being made in a distant city by people who don’t understand local issues and who are primarily focused on profits, not service.”

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APGA is the national association of municipally and publicly-owned local distribution systems. There are about 1000 public gas systems serving more than five million customers. These public gas utilities are not-for-profit retail distribution entities that are owned by, and accountable to, the citizens they serve. They include municipal gas distribution systems, public utility districts, county districts, and other public agencies that have natural gas distribution facilities.

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Dave Schryver
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