Massachusetts utility regulators have approved a plan to let the City of Marlborough buy electricity for residents and businesses through a buyer's cooperative that might get better rates than National Grid USA offers.
The plan is similar to the Cape Light Compact, a group that buys electricity for 200,000 Cape Cod residents unless they opt out. The Marlborough plan will pool 14,000 customers who get "basic service" as soon as May.
Customers will continue to pay National Grid for delivering electricity but pay Marlborough to contract with a competitive supplier for power, as long as it can get a lower rate than National Grid's.
Department of Telecommunications and Energy officials hope other local cooperatives will emerge.
-- Peter J. Howe
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