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The PSB approval of our (CVPS) plan is a major milestone.  Their plan is for an interconnected, automated system.  The plan should help in better integrating new renewable sources of energy, improve storm management and response, allow remote meter reading, connections and disconnections, help control operating costs, help balance power with rising and falling demand, and provide customers with more information to help them make wise energy choices. CVPS believes there will be environmental, system and economic benefits.

PSB Approves CVPS SmartPower™ plan

Magazine: CVPS among most intelligent utilities

NEWS Release
Aug. 26, 2010                                            Contact: Steve Costello, CVPS (802) 747-5427 or page (802) 742-3062

RUTLAND, VT – A major utility trade publication has listed Central Vermont Public Service (NYSE-CV) as one of the 25 most intelligent electric utilities – just as the Vermont Public Service Board has approved the company’s CVPS SmartPower™ plan.

Intelligent Utility, a publication of Energy Central, a leading utility information resource that produces numerous magazines, events, newsletters and direct marketing resources, named CVPS No. 16 on its annual list of the top 25 intelligent utilities.  “The Intelligent Utility rating is another acknowledgement that our employees continue to do what is necessary to stay on the forefront of good utility operations for the benefit of customers and shareholders alike,” CVPS President Bob Young said.  “The PSB approval of our plan highlights that as well.”

The magazine designation was based on an analysis of productivity, renewable energy reliance, smart grid efforts, demand response and energy efficiency, and information technology investments. In an article in the latest edition of the magazine, CVPS was given an Intelligent Utility IQ of 127.  Scores of 110 to 119 were described as “Superior,” while scores of 120 to 140 were described as “Very Superior.” Scores over 140 were described as “Near Genius.”  The company’s “Smart Grid IQ” was 161.

“This magazine defines an intelligent utility as a company that applies information to energy, maximizing its reliability, affordability and sustainability from generation to end users,” the magazine said.  “Becoming a more intelligent utility requires more than just technology investments; it requires a real investment in people and processes, too.”

The magazine highlighted the importance of company culture.  “Becoming a more intelligent utility has a lot to do with people,” the magazine said.  “Your employees need to understand your company’s vision, your strategy for getting there, why it’s important to all major stakeholders – including customers and regulators – and what this all means to your employees on a day-to-day basis.”

Young noted that cultural development has been a key focus at CV in recent years. “CV employees continue to use the company’s values – seize opportunities, talk straight and deliver – to worker smarter, find new solutions and exceed customers’ expectations,” Young said.  “They have always demonstrated a commitment to hard work, renewable energy, efficiency and sound investments in technology.

“Today we’re building on those cultural strengths with CVPS SmartPower™, which will further that commitment and provide customers who care to use them with new tools and information to reduce their energy consumption, peak loads and environmental impacts.”

In an order approving the CVPS SmartPower™ plan, the PSB praised CVPS for collaboration through the eEnergy Vermont Project with other utilities, and noted the CVPS plan includes automated metering, two-way communications systems and strategies to introduce new rate designs, including dynamic pricing and demand response programs.  “In combination, smartmeters, new rate designs, educational tools, and communication channels will allow customers to review their energy usage and make decisions that could potentially have a direct impact on their bills,” the PSB said.

The collaboration included a successful federal stimulus grant application that will bring over $68 million to Vermont to help pay for smart-grid technology.  CVPS will receive over $31 million to help pay for the costs of CVPS SmartPower™.  The first new meters will be installed in 2011, when pilot projects will begin.

These first pilots along with consumer outreach will help inform the development of new programs and services that allow customers to take full advantage of smart grid technologies.  For example, one pilot project will focus on identifying the best approach for working with customers to help control peak loads, thereby reducing and controlling the costs of purchasing power when prices are high.

The Intelligent Utility honor is the latest in a string of accolades for CVPS.  J.D. Power and Associates recently ranked Central Vermont Public Service third in the East for customer satisfaction among midsized utilities.  CVPS ranked highest in the East Midsize segment for customer service, second for corporate citizenship and third for communications factors.

Earlier this year, CVPS was recognized by Forbes as one of the 100 Most Trustworthy Companies in America.

From Steve Costello (802) 747-5427
CVPS – Recognized by Forbes as One of the Most Trustworthy Companies in America.

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