It’s time to consider public power
Follow the City of Millersburg as it studies the feasibility
and possible creation of a municipal electric utility.
Why is the City of Millersburg investigating the possibility of forming a municipal utility to provide electricity to city residents?
The short answer: an initial report from D. Hittle and Associates shows that forming a municipal utility would have significant long-term benefits for the community with no reduction in the quality of service. Read More >>>
Oregon law provides the authority for the City of Millersburg to own and operate an electric utility. There are currently 12 municipal utilities operating in Oregon.
The City has the opportunity to form a municipal utility and to purchase low-cost hydroelectric power from the Bonneville Power Administration (“BPA”). BPA is a federal agency charged with marketing the output of the federal Columbia River hydroelectric system. Although BPA has fully allocated the output of the federal hydroelectric system to other consumer-owned utilities, BPA reserved a small amount of such power at its lowest rates for new utilities. Only newly formed consumer-owned utilities, such as a municipal utility, are eligible under federal law to purchase this reserved power. One new consumer-owned utility has already been formed and has purchased a share of this BPA power. Other communities are interested in doing the same. Once the reserved power has been allocated to new utilities, it is unknown whether BPA can or will make more available. Thus, the City believes that it is prudent to analyze the feasibility of forming a municipal utility now, while it is still possible to acquire a share of the lowest-cost hydroelectric power that has been reserved by BPA.
The most recent new municipal utility to form in Oregon was the City of Hermiston in 2001. The City of Hermiston brought a condemnation action to acquire a portion of PacifiCorp distribution system. Hermiston purchases its wholesale power supply from BPA, and contracts with another local utility to operate its distribution system. We understand that the average residential electric customer located in Hermiston now pays about 30% less each month for power than the average residential customer of PacifiCorp located in nearby Pendleton.
About this site
This site provides Millersburg’s residents with more information about public power and how the City is investigating its options.
Public Meetings Scheduled
Let the City Council know your thoughts on the proposed municipal electric utility. Thursday, June 19, 2014
6:00 pm to 8:00 pm at the Linn County Fairgrounds. More information to come.
New Questions, New Answers
As we try to keep you informed of the latest developments as the City of Millersburg considers the possible creation of a municipal electric utility, please feel free to read the following:
What’s in the News:
From the Democrat Herald to the Oregonian, read the latest published news.
See the latest feasibility study results and other public information from the City, PacifiCorp and BPA
Who Said What:
See public statements and letters to the editor from decision makers and interested citizens.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Find the answers to many basic questions about the process the City is exploring (Updated 06.07.14)
Read Reports and Information:
Studies and analysis on public and private utilities
For information on PacifiCorp’s opinions on this proposal, please visit: