Public Meeting Alert

On Nov. 8, Hilliard voters will be asked to authorize the City to create a green-energy electric aggregation program. Learn more.

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Electric Aggregation 101: What Hilliard Residents Need to Know

Electric Aggregation (Issue 35) is on the ballot for Hilliard voters this November and is a program supporting sustainable energy that would offer residents and businesses that opt in, a bulk rate for electricity.

There are two main goals for this program.

  1. Promote the use and creation of electricity produced by sustainable sources, such as wind and solar.
  2. Secure the lowest-possible bulk rate by negotiating with sustainable energy providers.

Electric prices constantly fluctuate based on supply and demand, among other factors. But this program, if approved, would allow the City to act quickly on your behalf when the market is most favorable for sustainably-sourced electricity.

It’s important to know, it’s still your choice! Hilliard electric customers may always “opt out” of the program contract period and pay the market rate. Opting out will be as simple as completing an online form or returning a provided postcard informing us of your decision.

Even a “Yes” vote does not remove your choice. Everyone still keeps the same level of service, on the same power lines, and has the right to choose their provider.

The electric aggregation program just authorizes the City to negotiate a bulk rate for sustainably sourced electricity. You can then choose to “opt out” if you wish.

Voters in Columbus, Worthington, and Grove City have already made the commitment and authorized their municipal government to establish green-energy aggregation programs.

Now, it’s your choice to decide if this is the right step for the City of Hilliard. Election day is Tuesday, Nov. 8 and early voting begins Oct. 12. So get out and vote and make your voices heard this fall!

For complete information, visit our Electric Aggregation, Issue 35 page.

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“Real People” Spotlight: Dave Judson, Operations Administrator

September 27, 2022

This month’s “Real People” spotlight features Dave Judson, Operations Administrator, who’s been with the City for nearly three decades!

Judson has served residents in various capacities since joining the City of Hilliard Recreation and Parks Department in 1993. He went on to serve as Recreation Supervisor for the Hilliard Senior Center for 15 years before taking his current administrative role in the Operations Department.

No matter his role, Dave always displays a true “Heart for Service” in everything he does. Thank you for your dedication to the Hilliard community all these years!

City Earns Bronze SolSmart Award for Local Advancements in Solar Energy

September 20, 2022

The City of Hilliard is receiving a Bronze designation from the national SolSmart program for advancing the growth of solar energy across Central Ohio.

This designation recognizes the City for taking steps that make it faster, easier, and more affordable for local homes and businesses to go solar. SolSmart is led by the Interstate Renewable Energy Council (IREC) and the International City/County Management Association (ICMA) and funded by the U.S. Department of Energy Solar Energy Technologies Office.

More than 450 municipalities, counties, and regional organizations have achieved SolSmart designation since the program launched in 2016. SolSmart helps local governments and regional organizations bring new business to their community, promote economic growth, and foster the creation of new jobs.

“Now, more than ever, it’s important that we leverage the benefits of solar energy on a more consistent basis in our communities,” said Dan Ralley, Hilliard Assistant City Manager and Community Development Director. “Change like this happens at the local level, and we’re proud to earn this honor by providing clear guidance on regulation practices and educating our residents on the importance of solar platforms into the future.”

The City of Hilliard was recognized for its efforts in permitting and inspection as well planning and zoning with an emphasis on solar efficiency.

SolSmart uses objective criteria to award points based on the actions they take to reduce barriers to solar energy development. As part of the SolSmart program, a team of national experts provides no-cost technical assistance to help communities and regional organizations achieve designation.

Bridging the Gap Over I-270 at Cemetery Road: Pedestrian Path Survey Results

September 7, 2022

We asked and you answered! Earlier this summer, the City of Hilliard asked for your thoughts about four possible designs for a bike and pedestrian path over I-270 at Cemetery Road.

The goal of such a path is to prioritize safety, recreation, and connectivity for people who travel on foot or via bicycles. This is part of the City’s long-range plan to improve the environment, promote alternate forms of transportation, support local business, and connect our community to Central Ohio’s multi-use path system.

More than 400 people provided feedback that ultimately informed our decision. The clear preference was for the City to build a crossing entirely on the south side of Cemetery Road, including a tunnel under eastbound Cemetery Road to the southbound I-270 entrance ramp. This path would loop up to the pedestrian bridge over the interstate.

This design would create a safe and user-friendly option for pedestrians, bicyclists, or anyone not traveling by vehicle to cross I-270 between Cemetery Road, Trueman Boulevard, and Mill Run on the east side of the interstate. Here’s why:

1. The multi-use path will be on a separate bridge on the south side of Cemetery Road. This means automobile traffic will not be affected by the new multi-use crossing. The new bridge also will not be affected by any future improvements to the existing interchange .

2. This option eliminates all free flow ramp crossings for path users. There will be only one ramp crossing at a signalized intersection.

3. It also results in fewer interactions between vehicles and path users.

4. Finally, there are fewer right-of-way impacts between Britton Parkway and I-270.

Now that you’ve helped us determine the best plan for Hilliard, the City will begin the process of securing outside funding from the federal government and other sources to pay for this needed improvement.

At this time, the City is in the process of applying for two grants – the MORPC Attributable Fund, and the Safe Streets and Roads for All Grant.

About 80 percent of the funding for the I-270 trail project would come from these federal funds, with the remaining 20 percent funded by the City of Hilliard or other non-federal sources. The City should know more about the status of this funding in early 2023.

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