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YOUR OPINION: Utility laws must change

The Patriot Ledger
Posted Nov 19, 2009

I am responding to The Patriot Ledger’s Nov. 12 article, “
Bill requires utilities’ emergency plans.

Large utilities, like Unitil, National Grid or NStar can afford to pay large fines.

Large utilities will become truly responsive to their customers, only if cities and towns can replace an underperforming utility with a municipal one.

Massachusetts’ 41 municipal utilities offer lower rates, better service and fewer outages than our large utilities (

As long as large utilities enjoy a monopoly – even if they face heavy fines for poor emergency response – they will continue to charge 20 to 50 percent more than municipal utilities for the same electricity.

The Legislature must amend an obsolete, century-old statute which now allows large utilities to block any new municipal utility.

Member, Lexington Electric Utility Committee