Colonie approves new methane-credit contract

After a 4-to-3 vote, the Colonie Town Board passed a resolution that would allow an energy systems company to convert methane gas produced at the landfill into energy credits that can be sold, generating revenue for the town.

All board members agreed that what the resolution promoted would be beneficial for the town, but it was passed after some expressing concern with the way the resolution was introduced to the board on Thursday, April 2.

The decision lets the town enter into a new contract with Innovative Energy Systems, a company that collects the energy credits from the methane gas that is produced at the town's landfill and later sell them. Previously, that work had been done by the town.

According to Director of Town Operations Peter Gannon, the company has informed the town that with the landfill's current system, the revenue stream of the energy credits is only at 75 percent of its capacity.

They can bring it up to 98 percent, thereby generating more revenue, he said.

In terms of money, Gannon said, the new system could generate between $200,000 and $300,000 more per year.

Before voting on the issue, Republican Councilman Brian Hogan asked the board and Supervisor Paula Mahan to table the resolution so that Director of the Town Landfill Joe Stockbridge could have a chance to thoroughly look through the contract.

While Jack Spath, a lawyer in the town attorney's office, told the Town Board that he had met with Stockbridge that week, Stockbridge told The Spotlight he was not able to review the contract before it was passed.

"The copy of the contract that was supplied to me, I haven't gone through it yet," he said.

According to Hogan, the contract that the town will now enter into with Innovative Energy Systems was presented to members of the Town Board the same day as the meeting. While Hogan said this often has been the case under the Mahan's administration, this was not the way business was conducted under past supervisors.

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