Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Pound Ridge Joins Croton and Says "No" to ESCO

ABG recently learned that Pound Ridge's leadership reviewed the proposal from Sustainable Westchester and voted against adopting it in their February 4th meeting. In watching the Board's meeting, the Pound Ridge officials expressed serious concerns about their program, some similar to those expressed by the village board majority and in Mayor Schmidt's recent letter to the Gazette (which ABG is trying to locate).

Additionally, new information has surfaced - in which it is detailed that Sustainable Westchester may not go with the lowest cost provider when narrowing down the bids list and is looking at solely "renewables", which one Pound Ridge official categorized as a "bait and switch". We also learned that Sustainable Westchester's CEO Mike Gordon was present during the meeting.

Watch the meeting here:

Concerns about the administrative costs have also risen versus any alleged benefit, etc., given the fact that taxpayer funds would be utilized. Comments by Mr. Gordon about how other communities have joined this ESCO were essentially dismissed by Pound Ridge officials who described those decisions as having been made "will-nilly" given the obvious concerns about the program. 

The Pound Ridge board voted unanimously NOT to participate at this time, waiting to see if the initial roll-out goes well--if need be "18 months down the line". The Sustainable Westchester representative indicated that bids would go out on February 22, offering another "new" deadline, should the Pound Ridge Board could decide to re-vote before then. These officials clearly declined but apparently Sustainable Westchester is holding out for a last minute "hat-trick".

Please also note that on Sustainable Westchester's website, Croton on Hudson's approval of the program is still being shown as "pending" 
as seen in the screen capture image below. That is simply untrue. The vote was taken and the answer was no.

It remains to be seen how this will play out, especially given the volatility of the fuel industry of late. But it is refreshing to see politicians who have their constituents best interest at heart and not looking to merely ride the publicity wave. We can only hope to see this kind of concern someday in Greenburgh. Only then will we see A Better Greenburgh.

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