Summit County residents will see better natural-gas prices this winter.

County Council authorized the county executive to enter into a 20-month agreement at a fixed price of $4.17/Mcf to $4.22/Mcf — depending what the rate is when the contract is signed — this week.

Constellation Energy Gas Choice Inc. of Kentucky was recommended to supply natural gas for the county’s opt-out natural-gas aggregation program.

The current aggregation rate is $5.39/Mcf.

The county hired Buckeye Energy Brokers Inc. of Twinsburg, to seek proposals. There were 11 bids.

Direct Energy chose not to bid due to system issues. Last year, Direct Energy’s aggregation program was riddled with errors.

The company’s proposal will be offered to eight of the nine townships, all but Sagamore Hills and not the city of New Franklin.

The agreement is expected to be signed Wednesday. The fixed rate would run from Feb. 1, 2014, through Sept. 30, 2015.

Letters are expected to be sent out for the aggregation program Dec. 5 through Dec. 15.

Both Tallmadge and Green have recently moved to Constellation as well.

In other council news, the council passed a resolution approving and adopting the 2014 full operating budget for the Children Services Board ($47,000), the Alcohol, Drug Addiction and Mental Health Services Board ($45,000) and the Board of Developmental Disabilities ($80,000).

The council also confirmed the professional service contract with the Akron Legal News by the Board of Control.

The contract allows the Akron Legal News to provide publication of notices of sheriff sales and legal notices.

The contract runs for five years from Jan. 1, 2014, through Dec. 31, 2018 — with two five-year renewal options.

The Akron Beacon Journal also submitted a proposal for the contract.

Marilyn Miller can be reached at 330-996-3098 or mmiller@thebeaconjournal.com.