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Consumers still seeking sign-ups in Atlas, Brandon



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November 13, 2013 - As temperatures plummeted this week and snow flew, some residents of Atlas and Brandon townships are heating their homes with natural gas for the first time after Consumers Energy extended natural gas service in the area.

Other residents of the townships are still hoping for the opportunity to switch from propane however, as they wait to see whether the public utility will receive enough sign-ups to continue natural gas service projects. Consumers has extended the deadline to Dec. 20 for Atlas Township residents in phase two and for Brandon Township residents in phase three.

As of Nov. 11, Consumers Energy had received applications from 242 households in the third and final phase of a plan to offer natural gas service to Brandon Township residents. There are 855 total homes in phase three and the number of applications received is far short of the 50 percent participation goal.

"We need 427 sign-ups to reach the 50 percent requirement," said Consumers Energy Representative Debra Dodd.

Phase three in Brandon Township includes the area south of Davison Lake Road, north of Granger Road, west of Baldwin Road and east of Sashabaw Road. Eligible residences are located along those roads, as well as Hurd, Connell, Oakwood, Lockwood, Poli and Hummer Lake roads, as well as numerous side streets in that area.

Phase two construction in Brandon Township, which includes more than 380 customers on Perry Lake, Seymour Lake, Hadley, Granger, Glass, Hummer Lake, Honert, Sawmill Lake, Ortonville and State Park roads, is currently underway and expected to be completed by the end of December. Consumers began extension of gas mains in the township in 2012, with more than 225 customers signing up for natural gas service in the first phase.

In Atlas Township, 144 residents west of M-15 signed up for the first phase of the natural gas service project and construction is expected to be completed Dec. 15. Consumers Energy has received about 150 new applications for phase two east of M-15, which encompasses 430 residences, not yet enough to allow phase two to proceed.

"We are really hoping to make phase two a reality, but we are still falling short of the 215 applications needed," said Dodd. "Natural gas prices are at an all-time low right now and Consumers Energy is the lowest cost natural gas provider in the state. There will be significant fuel cost savings for those that do convert from propane to natural gas."

Atlas and Brandon residents that need an application or have questions regarding their project can contact Consumers Energy at 1-888-427-6246.

Susan covers Brandon Township and Ortonville
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