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Boulder May Have to Give Up its Efforts to Municipalize Xcel’s Operations There

June 13, 2016 By Ken Silverstein

BoulderIt’s long, hard and expensive fight for any city to takeover their local utilities. Boulder has discovered that as it has sought to municipalize Xcel Energy’s local operations there.

While Boulder will reserve the right to continue its pursuit, it has entered into talks with Xcel that may stave off the hostile takeover of its transmission assets that also stretch outside of city limits. Boulder’s goal has always been more green energy and it has complained that Xcel has not moved at a fast enough pace. Xcel, though, has consistently been named one of the greenest utilities by those who measure such things.

If the talks work out, Xcel would continue to be the electricity provider but it would presumably speed up its green energy initiatives there. The details will get hammered out over the next few months and perhaps be voted on by the city’s electorate in November — on the same ballot as the presidential contenders. That would ensure a high turnout.

Already, Boulder has spent about $10 million on this takeover.

“Both Boulder and Xcel Energy share numerous objectives and goals,” said David Eves, president of Xcel Energy in Colorado. “We believe working together we can take advantage of each other’s strengths and plans to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions, increase renewable energy and provide more customer choice and programs, which could serve as a roadmap for other communities in Colorado and the nation.

“The City of Boulder has been a longtime driver of change, and I hope to work with the city to continue providing excellent service to our electric customers, driving ground-breaking energy policy in Colorado and making a positive difference,” he added.

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