Powering Strong Communities

Rochester City Council Votes to Reserve Funds for Public Power Study

The Rochester, N.Y., City Council on June 20 voted to reserve funds for a public power utility study.

Rochester is currently served by investor-owned Rochester Gas & Electric.

The majority of City Council members had expressed support for this plan on paper since March.

In coordination with passing the city’s annual budget, the City Council passed a statement of necessity to reserve up to $500,000 for the study unanimously.

Funds are being made contingent on County leadership, and Rochester’s mayor will initiate a discussion of an intermunicipal agreement.

The City Council and the County Legislature still need to vote to commission the study, in coordination with Metro Justice, an organization in the city that supports the creation of a public power utility.

A recently released independent legal analysis from the Environmental Advocacy Clinic at the University at Buffalo School of Law makes the case for allowing for community stakeholder participation in the development of a request for proposals for a municipalization feasibility study.