Voters choose to continue local ownership of 128-year-old utility
May 10, 2022
Waterbury Center, Vermont – Barton Village voters elected not to sell Barton Electric to Vermont Electric Cooperative (VEC) in an Australian ballot vote on Tuesday. The decision allows Barton Village to continue owning and operating the electric utility that serves more than 2,000 customers in Barton, Brownington, Charleston, Irasburg, and Westmore.
“I’d like to thank the Barton Village residents for the commitment they’ve shown to their municipal electric utility,” said Ken Nolan, Vermont Public Power Supply Authority (VPPSA) General Manager. “Over the past several weeks, voters dedicated themselves to learning as much as possible about the electric utility industry so they could make an informed decision. Please know that VPPSA stands ready to assist the community as you move forward and explore the options for serving residents and customers of Barton Electric.”
Barton Village Trustees first announced their recommendation to sell the electric utility to VEC in March. Two informational meetings were held prior to the vote on May 10.
For more than 40 years, VPPSA has assisted Barton Electric with services and solutions to ensure safe, reliable, and affordable electric service.
“VPPSA exists to deliver exceptional service and value to community-owned utilities such as Barton by providing affordable, professional consultation in all areas related to running a local electric utility. This includes management of electric portfolios, financial support, IT support, rate planning support, and legislative and regulatory representation,” said Nolan.
“VPPSA offers support at the statewide level while we make decisions about how to run our utility at the local level,” said Reginald Beliveau, Swanton Village Electric Manager and Chair of the VPPSA Board of Directors. “The municipal electric utilities in our organization use many of VPPSA’s services but also have strong local teams that keep the lights on, the bills low, and provide excellent community service.”