To the editor:
I’m not sure those people circulating petitions to overturn city council’s action to credit part of the Renewable Energy Credits to our rate-payers understand the consequences of not supporting our citizens and our job providers.
In the last census, Oberlin’s African-American population dropped by over 200 citizens. If this trend continues, we will not be the town where I grew up and where I want my grandchildren to grow up. If Oberlin develops. the reputation of being an expensive place to live, the flight will continue.
We need jobs. Business and industry will not be drawn to Oberlin and the businesses will not stay if our energy costs are among the highest in the country.
Oberlin College is our partner. I am surprised at those who feel they should not participate in a credit return as one of our biggest electric customers.
I respect the right of our citizens to take part in the benefit of an energy credit. I have faith that many, both large and small energy users, will contribute freely to our Community Choice Fund.
Council’s plan respects the right of rate-payers to participate in the benefit of the REC dollars. It also creates two significant funds for projects that support sustainability. Sustainability means many things. It means the benefits of supporting all neighborhoods that make Oberlin what it is. It means creating jobs and opportunities for businesses and industries. It means developing the reputation for respecting our rate-payers while we continue our commitment to our Climate Action Plan.
Council has considered many effects of rate-payer rights and credits. Overturning council’s Community Choice Fund has many consequences. Please think twice before signing a petition which would weaken us as a community.
President, Oberlin City Council