Consider This: Lubbock is the only city to have ever paid to join ERCOT

Updated: Mar. 20, 2018 at 4:45 PM CDT
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The Public Utilities Commission has announced its decision. Lubbock will be admitted into ERCOT, the power grid that serves most of Texas.

And while city officials are patting themselves on the back, I'm skeptical, and I don't mind telling you why.

Lubbock is the only city to have ever paid to join ERCOT.

It's frustrating to me that Lubbock raised its hand and volunteered to pay $125 million when no one else has.

Earlier this year, the city voted to study the impact of retail electric competition in the Lubbock market.

Who are they kidding? We all know that's a done deal.

I can tell you that allowing retail competition devalues the largest asset owned by the city: its electric utility company.

And while big business will definitely benefit from competition, I have serious doubts whether you and I will see a dime of that savings on our home energy bill.

Consider this: After watching LP&L for the last twenty years, why would anyone think the council and the utility have suddenly started putting the best interests of ratepayers first?

The city has and will continue to take millions of dollars in annual transfers from LP&L, along with charging them more rent than any city department to pay for the Ivory Tower.

The council hasn't given me any reason to believe this is the best move, and until it does, I remain unconvinced.

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'Consider This' is a commentary by KCBD Vice-President and General Manager Dan Jackson.

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