*NOTE: This article address the state of electric deregulation in Pennsylvania.
I must confess that, as a conservative, I have an almost religious attachment to the power of free markets.
So, when Pennsylvania moved to deregulate the power industry, permitting consumers to select electricity providers on the basis of who had the best rate, I held out hope that, through the magic of the free market, consumers would experience improvements in services and lower prices.
electricity.jpgConsumers need clearer price information to make informed electric provider decisions.
However, free markets benefit consumers only under a set of conditions, the most important of which is transparency. While the consumer is perfectly capable of looking out for his or her own best interest, regulatory agencies can play an important role in forcing companies to disclose the true cost of their products and services.
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Is a policy analyst consultant for TCAP, a coalition of political subdivisions in Texas that purchase electricity in the deregulated market for their own governmental use. Because energy costs are typically a significant budget item to our members, TCAP is consistently looking for ways to save our members money, through cost-saving contracts, energy efficiency or demand response programs.