On Thursday, Columbus Mayor Michael B. Coleman and City Council President Andrew J. Ginther jointly announced the formation of a new six-member citizen advisory group – the Columbus Energy Review Committee – that will hold public meetings to determine whether the city should create a local buying group for natural gas and electricity. Ohio law allows consumers to form aggregate groups, including as cities, townships or counties, in order to purchase electricity or natural gas for its members from a single supplier. The benefit is the potential to achieve better prices as a unit than the consumers would individually. Mark R. Shanahan, a principal at New Morning Energy, will chair the group, which will also include the following "representatives from the energy industry, environmental community, neighborhoods and faith community":

  • Regina Clemons, director of emergency assistance, Impact Community Action Agency
  • Aparna Dial, director, Energy Services and Sustainability, Ohio State University
  • Cindy Farson, director, Central Ohio Area Agency on Aging
  • Tyrone Lawes, pastor, New Hope Baptist Church
  • Cheryl Roberto, associate vice president, Environmental Defense Fund, former Columbus Public Utilities director
  • Jim Sweeney, executive director, Franklinton Development Association

For more, read this Columbus Business First story.