A Brief History
Freeport Electric (FE) was established by public referendum in 1879. The Utility commenced operation in April 1898 and provided power for 24 carbon lights. As applications for electric service began to grow, the Utility developed a rate structure to meet demand. The rate structure looked something like this:
- Banks, stores, stables - ¾ cent per light
- Hotels and saloons - ½ cent per light
- Residential (10 lights and under) - $3 per month
Freeport Electric has always had a continued to provide safe, reliable, and economical power to residential and commercial customers for more than 118 years.
Much has changed since 1898. Today, Freeport Electric serves a community of over 45,000 people with a customer base of approximately 15,000.
- Residential customers - 13,000
- Commercial/Industrial - 1,800
- Other - municipal and water - 200
The Utility operates 2 generating stations with a total installed capacity of 75,000 KW and has a system peak of 60 MW. The old interconnecting substation, with a capacity of 30 MW, was decommissioned in 1997 and replaced with a new interconnecting substation located on Sunrise Highway. The new interconnecting substation was energized in December of 1996, and has a capacity of 84 MW. This substation operates 138 kV, cost $10.5 million, is 100% redundant, and can be easily expanded in the future to carry up to 138 MW.
Until the new substation was energized in late 1996, the Utility needed generation to meet its energy requirements on a daily basis. Currently, about 80% of the Utility's energy requirements are met with hydro power purchased from the New York Power Authority. However, continued low water flows on the Niagara River may reduce this in the future. Today, the Utility purchases energy whenever it is available as long as it can be purchased and transported for less money per kWh than generation.
Freeport Electric's energy costs are among the lowest on Long Island and more than 30% less than Long Island rates as furnished by PSEGLI (LIPA). Visit the Rates page of Freeport Electric's website to see electric rates.
Freeport Electric is also a member of the American Association of Public Providers (APPA) that was created by and for the nation's more than 2,000 not-for-profit, community and state-owned electric utilities to:
- Advance the national public policy interests of its members and their consumers.
- Provide services to help ensure adequate, reliable electricity at a reasonable price with proper protection of the environment.
In 2016, APPA formally recognized FE with a Platinum Designation for its outstanding performance in
- Workforce Development
- System Improvement
Criteria within each category are based on leading-edge business practices and are intended to represent a utility-wide commitment to safe and reliable delivery to electricity.
FE placed among 191 Municipal Utilities so honored out of more than 2000 community and municipal electric systems throughout the USA!
New York Association of Public Power (NYAPP)
Of the 3 municipal electric utilities on Long Island (Freeport Electric, Rockville Center and Greenport) Freeport Electric is the largest. All 3 of these utilities are members of a municipal and cooperative organization called the New York Association of Public Power (NYAPP). The NYAPP members work together to address legal issues and negotiate key power contracts. In addition, the Association members will assist each other in severe storm conditions. Freeport Electric has sent workers to Rochester, New York to assist in restoration activities. Freeport Electric has even assisted LIPA. In a time of need, most utilities will work together.