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Decision details

Electricity Levy exemptions

Decision Maker: Executive Director: Growth and Regeneration

Decision status: Recommendations Approved

Is Key decision?: No

Is subject to call in?: No


The electricity supply contract for the council’s larger sites involves a ‘sleeving’ arrangement, using the council’s own wind turbines and solar farm to virtually supply council buildings. As the power output from these systems falls below the thresholds set out in the Electricity (Class Exemptions from the Requirement for a Licence) Order 2001, BCC should qualify for the appropriate licence exemptions. As such, BCC should not be liable to pay levies obligated on licenced electricity suppliers, equating to an estimated £600K per year. However, these exemptions need to be registered with the relevant authorities before our electricity supplier is able to apply the appropriate discount. This contract is to provide the necessary legal and technical support to enable BCC to register for these exemptions.


To award a contract for legal and technical services to enable the council to register as exempt from paying certain levies normally applied on electricity supplies.

Alternative options considered:

Option 1 - This is a potentially significant saving in the council’s annual electricity bill, so despite the legal and technical complexities involved, the option of not attempting to secure at least some exemptions was rejected.
This contract would be a direct award. The option of tendering more widely for the legal and technical support required was considered and tested, but this is a highly specialised legal and technical area. A search for alternative providers failed to identify anyone with the relevant experience. A soft market testing notice was also issued via the Council’s e-tendering tool to call for interest, but only the proposed supplier responded.

Publication date: 25/03/2024

Date of decision: 21/03/2024