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Village of Maryville, Illinois

Description Caucus Meeting
Date 12/14/2011 Location Council Chamber
Time Speaker Note
6:30:07 PM Gulledge Called the Caucus meeting of Wednesday, December 14, 2011 to order and invited those in attendance to join in the Pledge of Allegiance.
6:30:37 PM Gulledge Asked for a roll call of those officers present. Answering the roll were Trustees Vallino, Bell, Kostyshock, Garcia and Short. Trustee Schmidt was absent. Also in attendance were Clerk Henry, Deputy Clerk Triplo, Attorney Motil, Public Works Director Presson. Philip Carr, Good Energy 232 Madison Avenue, Suite 405, New York, NY 10016 and 1 guest.
6:31:04 PM Gulledge Called for approval of the November 30, 2011 Caucus meeting minutes. Asked if there were any questions, additions or subtractions to the minutes as prepared by the Clerk. There were none. Motion to approve the minutes was made by Vallino and seconded by Kostyshock. Roll call vote on the motion: Vallino - yes; Bell - yes; Kostyshock - yes; Garcia - yes; Short - yes. Motion carried.
6:31:40 PM Gulledge First on the agenda Philip Carr, representative from Good Energy LP - He will be discussing the Ameren Electric Aggregation Opt-Out Program. All Trustees received copies of the Good Energy presentation.
6:32:31 PM Carr Philip Carr stated his name and address. Carr gave a detailed presentation explaining the Ameren Electric Aggregation Opt-Out Program. He explained how it works and what the Village needs to do in order to get it on the next ballot.
6:53:51 PM Bell How often do you rebid the program? Is that based on the initial contract?
6:54:14 PM Carr The law hasn't been written on the rebid process. The Good Energy company will go thru another bid and there will be another opt-out period. The company will handle the additional bids if the Village would want them to.
6:55:27 PM Bell Will there be two separate bills? Carr answered no it will only be one bill.
6:55:35 PM Vallino If we opt out just on the electricity portion with Ameren will it make our gas portion go up? Carr responded no it will not. Vallino asked if the rates would compare to Southwest rates. Carr didn't have Southwestern Electric rates.
6:56:49 PM Garcia Wanted confirmation from Carr that the Village residents would be saving approximately $150/year with this program. Carr confirmed $120-$150/year.
6:57:01 PM Motil If we put this on the ballot - Good Energy handles all the costs, are the contracts exclusive? What would stop another company to come in after we have passed it? Who are your competitors and will they be coming in after we sign with Good Energy? Carr said they haven't lost any clients to their competitors. Motil also confirmed that the Village would be paying Good Energy nothing for the work and services they provide. Carr confirmed that is correct.
7:06:21 PM Kostyshock How many nearby towns have already signed up to be on the referendum?  Carr answered Granite City, Glen Carbon, Columbia and Collinsville. Trustee Kostyshock looking for a city/town where this has already been passed. No one in Ameren territory. The only areas already passed are up north, Carr believes they are receiving the savings.
7:09:12 PM Bell Are there areas that you've presented to that have turned down the option? Yes, but not with Carr personally. Reasons seem to be due to a board who do not agree or the board is feeling rushed on the decision.
7:10:12 PM Short How long are the bids good for and how often do you rebid? Rebid depending on your contract. How long has the company been doing this program? Carr says it's brand new in Illinois, it's a new frontier.
7:16:42 PM Gulledge Mayor asked Carr to explain the pricing/savings. Currently Ameren has all of the potential customers, how would Good Energy purchase cheaper than Ameren Electric? Carr explained savings, main reasons for savings is the way they bought power in the past. Good Energy will be buying power for a three-year period when the market is low. We know if we bought today it would be lower due to the market conditions during the bid period. Carr reminded that you can back out of the entire program up to the bid date.
7:21:50 PM Gulledge Why would you recommend the board pass this now, instead of waiting to see how it all plays out and then put it on the November ballot?
7:22:20 PM Carr First of all we have no idea what the market will be in November. We know what the market is now. The economy is always changing and if the market changes then this program will be gone. And secondly laws come and go, currently this is available to Illinois, if we pass it now it will be grandfathered in to the new system.
7:25:19 PM Bell After you accept the bid and then you exhaust your contract, you rebid and lets say you don't like the new contract, does Ameren just accept you back in to the program? Short added, then do we have to pay the $25 fee?  Carr answered yes, the customer then has to pay the fee and Ameren will take you back.
7:27:14 PM Kostyshock Will Ameren be losing any money? He's wondering if it will change Ameren rates, if they lose customers.
7:28:38 PM Motil Has there been any type of court contests of the referendum on the ballot question? Carr referred Motil to the presentation with the exact wording for the ballot question.
7:30:17 PM Short Will all residents vote, even if this won't pertain to all residents based on Southwestern Electric and Ameren? All residents will get get the flyer on the program even if they are in the Southwestern area.
7:31:38 PM Gulledge Jeff Berkbigler from City of Edwardsville Attorney, Mayor asked if he had any questions and stated he had invited him to come to this meeting.
7:32:13 PM Berkbigler Asked Carr if a resident can vote on an issue if it doesn't pertain to that resident based on the company service they currently have. Carr said he would have to find out more about that issue.
7:34:25 PM Gulledge Mayor touched on the opt-out program, he believes our Village residents would be confused and calling us with complaints and questions if they missed the date and were charged a fee.
7:40:25 PM Gulledge Thanked Philip Carr for his information.
7:41:57 PM Gulledge Agenda 7 - Change order #1 from Missouri Petroleum Products Co. for 2011 Microsurfacing Project Contract Time Extension to May 31, 2012.
7:42:24 PM Presson Asking Board for the extension on contract because Missouri Petroleum will not make it due to the weather.
7:42:37 PM Gulledge We need to wait, but it will take Board action to extend contract - it will keep the old pricing and it will keep pricing locked in. Glen Carbon and Granite had to extend contract as well. Nothing further for Presson.
7:43:18 PM Gulledge Agenda 6 purchase of new laptop computer.
7:43:29 PM Bell Buying one computer - 2 quotes - Laptop will replace the meeting laptop in the council chambers - Bell would like to go with the I5. Bell would like to do a laptop that could do both 3 year warrantee. 
7:45:30 PM Gulledge Asked if there is anything currently wrong with the laptop.
7:45:43 PM Bell Computer is slow and six years old. Needs to be updated due to its slow running time during the meetings.
7:47:52 PM Bell He wants to recommend the better laptop and the Microsoft Office package. The new laptop would also need to be upgraded with new projectors (since they are 10 years old) - docking station may not be necessary - docking station is $219. Cheaper computer doesn't have a docking station option.
7:49:51 PM Henry There is no money remaining in the computer account budget.
7:50:11 PM Bell Money could be spread out over other budgets.
7:50:35 PM Garcia What else do we use it for? Do we just use it to project during meetings?
7:50:45 PM Bell Explained we use it for the minutes and for the GIS program, presentations, thumb drives, etc.
7:51:13 PM Gulledge If we need it we will find out how to pay for it. The question is do we need it now?
7:51:40 PM Vallino Feels like it is a need and suggests going with the 3 year warrantee and the docking station.
7:52:05 PM Bell I can go either way on the docking station.
7:53:45 PM Bell Explained a docking station extends the use and extends your ports on the machine.
7:55:05 PM Gulledge We will get a docking station for the new laptop.
7:55:14 PM Bell Asked Marvin to look into the projectors, we haven't had a service contract since 2005, almost 10 years old. Projectors have come down in price, if we are going to replace. Schillers said the service call would be $1500+ and you could almost buy a new projector for the price. The dilemma with the projectors is all our cabling is VGA and a switch that runs thru everything in the room. New projectors do not use VGA, new projectors use display port, so another cost would be running new cables to the projectors. We would want to purchase two projectors so they can be rewired at one time. New laptop will have both VGA and display port output so we could transition when we would purchase the new projectors.
8:00:04 PM Motil Is there anyway to do one projector and turn to the wall by the guest microphone, that way the public and the board would all be able to see it, and it would be a savings going to one projector instead of two.
8:02:08 PM Vallino Thinks you should price them all out (both versions) and then we can make a decision.
8:02:38 PM Bell Doesn't think we should put money into the current projector. Maybe keep the VGA system for now, but get pricing on replacing the projector.
8:02:56 PM Gulledge Talked about if we have one projector, we have no backup. Having two projectors does cost more money, but it does give us a backup.
8:04:11 PM Gulledge What if we brought the closed session projector and swapped them.
8:05:33 PM Bell Scheillers told Marvin it would not be cost effective to have it fixed.
8:06:37 PM Gulledge Have Marvin do the research on replacing or fixing projector and what is the cost.
8:08:11 PM Gulledge Went to Public Input. There was none.
8:10:21 PM Gulledge Went to Calendar updates Mayor pointed out the following dates - Calendar - 20th CARD Mtg 7pm - Board Mtg next Wed 21st - 22nd Christmas Party - 28th Caucus Mtg, Board thought we should cancel.
8:13:13 PM Gulledge Went to Trustee Comments.
8:13:27 PM Vallino New board today on the sign and it's working today. Ended up being a program issue.
8:14:54 PM Gulledge Mayor wants to discuss Philip Carr, Good Energy - Mayor informed trustees that he has been checking into what the other communities are doing with this issue. Sounds like most local communities are waiting. Mayor wanting to discuss with Trustees. Mayor doesn't like feeling rushed into a decision.
8:18:04 PM Vallino He thinks let the people have the choice. He still has questions but isn't opposed - let it go on the ballot. Let the residents vote themselves. March will be the lowest rate due to the majority of the bids.
8:20:31 PM Bell He says even if the down market the electric doesn't go down.
8:21:33 PM Gulledge He doesn't understand how Ameren will get it cheaper. They will all bid together.
8:22:46 PM Bell Let the people decide.
8:23:01 PM Kostyshock It's a win win for Good Energy. He says they are going to get their money either way.
8:23:52 PM Motil They could be partnered in with Ameren, that worries him.
8:24:27 PM Kostyshock This company is trying to make a fast buck. Ameren isn't going to lose any money and he thinks they are getting their money back somewhere. And then he's worried that the rates will go up. He thinks it's too good to be true.
8:25:50 PM Garcia Thinks its too good to be true....unsure.
8:26:30 PM Short How is the tax based. Electric is based by a kilowatt hour per Henry. Short thinks it sounds good and there is no fee to the Village unless the residents won't understand it. Biggest concern is that the residents won't understand.
8:27:45 PM Bell Thinks competition is good. And by getting the large group together, may get the better rate.
8:28:42 PM Motil Legally he's cautious and he thinks possible danger to rush into something. And if it's such a good thing then we wait and add to the November ballot. He spoke about a person in Pontoon Beach who had the same situation and their bill has been 20% more than expected.
8:30:12 PM Gulledge Village went with Ameren Energy Marketing who said there would be a 10% savings, doesn't seem we are getting it. Rates dropped but we aren't seeing very much savings.
8:31:52 PM Gulledge Mayor thinks we should wait on it, because we would have to make the decision by next week.
8:34:00 PM Motil They are coming in late to the smaller villages. They went to the big markets first.
8:34:36 PM Garcia Suggests we should wait until November because more people will be coming out to vote.
8:34:54 PM Gulledge Mayor would like to know if Trustees would like to put it on referendum for March. After Trustee discussion, Board would like to wait until they have more information to make an decision. No other Trustee comments.
8:41:43 PM Gulledge Mayor comments. Mayor, Motil and Brussati recommends we switch to Arthur Gallager Risk Management Services for Insurance. They researched item by item and the bottom line is can save about $71,000 by going with the other company. Some deductibles will be higher. Discussion with Trustees about switching companies. After much discussion, Board agreed to switch and if after a year they aren't happy then they will switch back.
8:51:37 PM Gulledge Being no further business, asked for a motion to adjourn. Motion made by Bell and seconded by Short. Roll call on the motion: Vallino - yes; Bell - yes; Kostyshock - yes; Garcia - yes; Short - yes. Motion carried.
8:52:03 PM Gulledge Meeting adjourned.
Respectfully submitted,

Carrie Triplo, Deputy Clerk

 

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