Originally inhabited by nomadic Indians, buffalo, and eventually, the United States military (in addition to the townspeople who settled there), Abilene is the county seat for Taylor County. It is located about 180 miles west of Dallas.
The city itself was established in 1881 after the Texas & Pacific Railroad was built. The city’s biggest challenge was water – primarily, not having enough. To solve this problem, the town excavated four lakes, Lytle Lake, Lake Abilene, Lake Kirby, and Lake Fort Phantom Hill to make sure that they could continue to provide a reliable water supply.
Abilene is currently best known for dining, shopping and cultural events that give this small town a big city feel.
Energy Deregulation in Abilene
Following the 2002 legislation that was passed in the state of Texas, Abilene became an energy deregulated city. This changed the way consumers were able to purchase their energy in a big way. Utilities had to give up control over the supply of electricity. No longer the sole owners of this service, the open market cleared the way for companies known as electricity providers.
Electricity providers give energy consumers the flexibility to choose who supplies their electricity. To keep up with the competition, these electricity providers have to come up with rates, services and products that can attract and maintain a high level of customer retention.
Abilene Electricity Providers
Texas as a whole has a wide range of electricity providers. While many of them offer services in different cities and counties, it is important to make sure the electricity provider you select is available in Abilene. Some of the electricity providers in the area currently include,
- Bounce Energy
- 4Change Energy
- Cirro Energy
- Pennywise Power
- Green Mountain Energy
- Payless Power
- Champion Energy Services
Abilene’s Energy Industry
In 1891, Abilene Electric Light and Power opened its doors, until 1905 when city electricity and water combined into a single group: Abilene Light and Water Company. When West Texas Utilities formed a few years later, Lone Star Gas acquired all gas operations.
After World War II, the oil industry boomed for Abilene. The city was involved in the exploration, drilling, and refining of oil and gas. As a result, by 1982, manufacturing companies grew from 111 to 145 and banking, retail, construction and retail saw large periods of growth.
Today, the city still benefits from oil and gas exploration in nearby areas.
Other Major Industries in Abilene
Government – Abilene’s city government employs almost 9,000 people. The industry includes, Abilene State Supported Living Center, City of Abilene, Texas Department of Criminal Justice, and Taylor County
Education – Schools located within and around the city help to employ over 3,000 workers. These institutions include, Abilene ISD, and Abilene Christian University.
Military – During World War II the United States Army took over Camp Barkeley, which helped to bring about a significant financial change for the city. Over a million people put millions of dollars into the economy. To continue this trend, Dyess Air Force Base was formed in 1952. It continues to be an active military base to this day.
Other major industries in Abilene include,
- Health Care
- Entertainment & Tourism
Abilene Quick Stats
With such a diverse economy, it’s easy to see how Abilene has managed to continue to grow year over year. For more quick tidbits of information on this small town, here are a few more stats:
Total Population: 136,000
Land Area: 105.1 square miles
Total Number of Households: 45,618
Median Household Income (2013): $43,059
Median Age: 31
Cost of Living (U.S. average is 100): 83.3
Major Tourist Attractions: Abilene Zoological Gardens, Frontier Texas, Prime Time Family Entertainment Center
Abilene’s Major Utilities
While electric providers handle the supply of electricity, utilities still take care of the daily maintenance and repair of wires and poles, as well as any other energy delivery tasks, processes or concerns. Abilene has one primary utility:
American Electric Power – 1-866-223-8508
In the event of a power outage or other power related emergency, be sure to contact your utility for help. Electric providers are typically unable to assist you with delivery related issues.