Presque Isle Electric & Gas Co-op (PIE&G) reached an agreement on May 1 to purchase Aurora Gas Co. (AGC), in a move that will strengthen PIE&G’s overall operations by expanding its membership base, PIE&G President and CEO Tom Sobeck said on Tuesday.

Effective immediately, AGC natural gas customers will become members of PIE&G, if they are not already members taking electric service. PIE&G will be contacting AGC customers soon regarding the transition of their accounts to PIE&G’s system.

“The economic climate in rural northeast Michigan is challenging and opportunities to expand are limited,” Sobeck said. “The acquisition of Aurora Gas Co. is a unique opportunity for PIE&G to increase the number of people it serves, which in turn benefits existing natural gas and electric members by spreading overall costs among more members.”

The acquisition, executed May 1, increases PIE&G’s natural gas services by about 28 percent, or 2,800 accounts.

Sobeck stressed the importance of building on the financial investment and personal commitment of the John and Helen Tierney family, owners of Aurora Gas Co., to Onaway residents for more than 34 years.

“PIE&G is proud to be in a position where we can help to keep their investment working in our local community while supporting the regional economy in northeast Michigan,” Sobeck added. “The principals of both companies recognize and are committed to providing the essential services required to enhance the quality of life for northeast Michigan residents.”