This week Cleveland Owns and our partners Greater Cleveland Congregation and CPA took a big step towards founding a purchasing cooperative for houses of worship and other nonprofits when we completed a group purchase of electricity!
27 congregations and nonprofits of all sizes and from all corners of the city and the region came together to sign multi-year electric supply contracts at fixed rates we’d negotiated as a group -- rates better than we’ve seen anywhere else. Those contracts are together worth more than $300,000. Our institutions will be saving 15% or more off the comparable rate through municipal aggregation. The group purchase ensures every congregation -- including those with limited or no staff to sort through the complex world of electric supply contracts -- will see predictable rates, and that no congregation will wind up with a bad deal that unscrupulous brokers sometimes steer clients into.
It’s a step towards building economic power -- and solidarity -- between houses of worship and nonprofits, and a step towards the cooperative future our region needs to thrive.
Now that group electric purchase is complete, and our waste hauling program is up and running, we’re thinking about what’s next: gas, janitorial services, solar, LED retrofits, etc. What would you recommend we tackle next? Let us know at email@example.com, or with a message on Instagram.
Our purchasing cooperative has also been making progress on picking a name and visual identity. We’ll have updates for you soon!