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Contact: Laura Van Wert, 410-732-9564


BALTIMORE, MD (March 26, 2014) - An unprecedented spike in energy costs hit most of the East Coast in January as a result of the frigid temperatures caused by the polar vortex.

Twenty-three entities in the Baltimore region will avoid paying an extra $15.1 million for that spike through the advanced purchase of electricity and natural gas organized by the Baltimore Regional Cooperative Purchasing Committee (BRCPC)'s Energy Board. The BRCPC board, which is staffed and coordinated through the Baltimore Metropolitan Council (BMC), is a consortium for regional entities to work together to achieve cost savings through a disciplined managed portfolio approach to purchasing energy.

Those entities that benefit through the Energy Board's fixed rate blocks include Anne Arundel, Baltimore, Carroll, Harford and Howard county governments; the cities of Aberdeen, Annapolis, Baltimore and Bowie; Anne Arundel County, Baltimore County, Baltimore City, Harford County and Howard County public schools; Anne Arundel County, Baltimore County, Harford County and Howard County community colleges; Baltimore County Libraries; Baltimore County Rev Authority; Baltimore Museum of Art; Housing Authority of Baltimore City; and the Walters Art Gallery.

"The forethought of BRCPC and the BMC in establishing an energy board to cooperatively purchase energy and implement a strategy of hedged and fixed rate purchases served the member entities well," said BRCPC Energy Board Chair Matthew Carpenter, of Baltimore County government's Office of Budgets and Finance. "We are glad this forethought has served the member entities well in the reasonable acquisition of power, but in a larger sense, it speaks to prudent stewardship of taxpayer and constituent resources entrusted to the various entities of the group."

The BRCPC's Energy Board purchases the majority of its electricity and natural gas (80 percent) in fixed rate blocks months and sometimes years in advance, while buying a lesser portion (20 percent) at a day-ahead rate to lock down low prices. By securing these costs ahead of time, the Energy Board paid approximately $14 million for electricity in January at $95.57/MWh, while those that purchased energy without a fixed rate paid approximately $29.2 million, at $199.17/MWh for the same amount.

Using a managed portfolio approach to purchasing energy over time can result in lower prices, more stability and more predictable costs in governmental budgets.

For more information on the Baltimore Regional Cooperative Purchasing Committee or the Energy Board, go to

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The Baltimore Metropolitan Council (BMC) is the organization of the region's elected executives who are committed to identifying regional interests and developing collaborative strategies, plans and programs which will improve the quality of life and economic vitality throughout the region.


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Laura Van Wert 

Communications Officer    


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