Electricity Rate Savings Programs

electricity The price of electricity made headlines lately, as voters in many communities throughout Illinois passed referenda allowing their municipalities to arrange for the supply of electricity for residential and small commercial retail customers instead of relying on ComEd.

On January 1, 2010, the Illinois legislature authorized municipalities, upon voter approval via referendum, to aggregate their communities' energy needs in order to negotiate with an alternate electric power supplier. Municipal aggregation allows communities to jointly aggregate all residential and small business customers of ComEd into a group for the purpose of securing lower electricity rates from designated alternate retail electricity suppliers. This results in an "opt-out" program in which residents are automatically enrolled after their municipality completes the electricity bidding process.

While the Village Board in Roselle decided not to place a referendum question regarding municipal aggregation of electricity on the election ballot, residents and small business owners can still realize short-term savings on electricity through several other programs currently being offered.

Clean Air Counts, a campaign created by the Metropolitan Mayors Caucus (of which Roselle is a member), launched an energy savings program to provide lower rates to residents through an "opt-in" electrical aggregation program with Integrys Energy Services. One advantage to an "opt-in" program is that residents and business owners are able to tap into electricity savings quickly, without a community bidding process. Information about this program is available on the Clean Air Counts website.

The Citizens Utility Board website has a great resource for those interested in learning more about alternative power suppliers and the rates that they are offering. Visit their website to access the special fact sheet on electric competition.

Plug In Illinois, an online resource from the Illinois Commerce Commission, also has information on electricity choices and compares current offers. Visit www.pluginillinois.org online for more information.