“You get this sort of downward spiral,” added Mason Miller, Ashley Energy’s president and CEO. He said a “lack of partnership” between the city and the steam loop’s previous operator failed to draw new users to the system, and ultimately raised rates for those that remain.
Coatar and proponents of his bill say there’s not yet desperation to keep the steam loop viable. Instead, they say they aim to proactively start a discussion about how the city can bolster support for it.
“It’s not forcing developers to do anything,” said Miller. “If they don’t want to be on steam and want to do their own boilers, they can do it. They just can’t receive tax incentives.”
“We’re looking for a level playing field,” adds Dennis. “The city is tied into the district energy system. ... They have recognized it’s in their interest to make sure there’s enough people on it.”