Overall, municipal-owned utilities have half as many outage minutes and 14% cheaper power on a national average than corporate-owned power utilities. On average, municipal utilities are quicker to get the power back on after severe weather events than corporate-owned utilities. Municipal utilities are often more efficient in getting the same amount of work done for less cost because there is less overheard, no right of way fees, no shareholders to pay dividends to (the returns go back into the city), minimal lobbying, and no lavish executive bonuses.
However, we were never quite certain whether municipalization is the right choice for Minneapolis specifically. Nevertheless in 2013 we enabled and pushed the city to evaluate and pursue Municipal Utility as an option that includes a requirement to ensuring that a municipal utility would:
- Keep rates at or below their current levels
- Maintain or improving energy reliability
- Create a clear pathway to dramatic city-wide energy savings to reduce both costs and dependency on dirty energy,
- Create a structure and system for greater community ownership, control, and economic benefit in our energy system
Pursuit of a Municipal Utility is not an option however, for the duration of the City-Utility Partnership.