Ghent joins local switch to green power plan

GHENT–The Town Board approved a new contract to change to a cheaper energy supplier last week. The town’s electric power will now come from Viridian Energy following approval by the board of a two-year agreement with the company at its April 17 meeting. The decision adds Ghent to the growing list of municipalities in the county switching to Viridian or considering whether to do so.

The board also approved a request from the Upstate New York Chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society to use the West Ghent Recreational Facility as a rest stop for their annual “Bike MS” event.

Town Supervisor Mike Benvenuto said the agreement with Viridian is for a fixed rate of 0.0949 cents per kilowatt-hour for two years. He said Viridian estimates the town’s savings will be about $11,000 a year.

“Basically they’re offering half of the cost of what we’re currently paying,” said Supervisor Benvenuto.

While the energy will be supplied by Viridian, it will still be delivered by NYSEG.

Viridian, which promotes its green energy power sources on its website, www.viridian.com, is based in Stamford, CT.

In other business, the board approved a request by the Upstate New York Chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society to use the West Ghent Recreational Facility during its “Bike MS” event on September 20. The facility was also utilized for last year’s event.

Every year, the National MS Society holds a series of fundraisers nationwide called “Bike MS” to raise money for multiple sclerosis research. Cyclists choose from a variety of routes of differing distances organized by individual chapters of the society. The Upstate New York Chapter’s event, “The Hudson River Ramble,” features routes of distances from 10 miles to 100 miles. The 62-mile and 100-mile routes are planned to go through Ghent. The Chapter requested permission to use the recreational facility in West Ghent as a rest stop to provide refreshments to cyclists.

A letter to the Town Board from a representative of the society said there would be a maximum of four volunteers and 15 cyclists at the facility at any given time. They expect to set up at about 9 a.m. and leave around 3:30 p.m. The letter says the event raised over $90,000 last year for MS research.

 

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