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Aztec deal to slightly lower electricity rate

A solar array in Aztec built by Guzman Energy as part of its agreement to provide power to the city. (Jon Austria/The Daily Times)

AZTEC — The City of Aztec has signed an agreement with Guzman Energy extending its power purchase contract for another 10 years and slightly lowering the amount the city pays for power.

“We will be buying power with them for the next 10 years cheaper than we were 25 years ago,” Aztec Electric Utility Director Ken George told the City Commission during a work session Feb. 11.

The new rate for the city is 4.25 cents per kilowatt hour, a decrease of about 0.2 cents.

George said it is the best power purchase agreement that the city has seen in years.

Aztec Mayor Victor Snover said the city has had a good partnership with Guzman Energy since it started purchasing power from the company in 2015.

Back in 2015, Guzman Energy was a small company with five employees. Aztec was its first contract in New Mexico, followed a few months later by a contract with Kit Carson Electric Cooperative.

Now it has more than 40 employees and is continuing to add new utilities to its service list. Guzman has also been working with Bloomfield as the city considers forming its own electric utility.

Prior to contracting with Guzman Energy, the City of Aztec had a contract with Public Service Company of New Mexico. The city had entered the contract with PNM when natural gas prices were high and, when natural gas prices decreased, Aztec was locked in to higher rates for buying power.

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