Erin Smith Sees Threat to Electric Aggregation Savings from ICC Regulation

The final part of Lakewood Village President Ern Smith’s winter newsletter follows:

Electrical Aggregation

Despite “Vote No” signs in the area opposing the bulk buying of electricity supervised by municipal governments, Lakewood and Crystal Lake residents voted in favor.

In the spring of 2012, our residents approved a referendum [results for all such referendums at link] by the widest margin in McHenry County to implement a municipal aggregation program for electricity.

Our results were better than hoped for, as we were able to secure some of the lowest electrical generation rates in the state of Illinois at less than half of the rate from ComEd.

We estimated that this program would save our residents between $300 and $350 annually.

However, the Illinois Commerce Commission (ICC) has initiated rulemaking that will negatively impact current and future municipal aggregation programs.

The ICC has chosen to undertake this process even though the General Assembly made it clear when it passed the enabling legislation that the ICC has no authority to regulate municipal aggregation programs.

The Village of Lakewood has chosen to work with 83 other communities as a part of a coalition to maintain our existing municipal aggregation program and fight the overreach of the ICC.

You can help us by contacting the following officials to express your support for the existing municipal aggregation program that you chose via a referendum:

  • ICC Chairman Doug Scott at (800) 524-0795
  • State Senator Pamela Althoff at (815) 455-8284
  • State Representative Michael Tryon at (815) 455-8284

New Business

I am very pleased to announce the opening of our newest business at Lakewood Commons – Tres Chic Boutique. It is a full service salon that will offer a wide range of services in a beautiful setting. The opening is tentatively scheduled for February 1, so please check our website regularly as the date approaches and be prepared to help support our newest business.

With this upcoming opening, only four of the original thirteen units at Lakewood Commons remain vacant. The owner is in the midst of installing a new sign that will help identify businesses, which is one of the most frequent requests we hear. In addition, a successful entrepreneur (who currently has two businesses) would like to open a Mexican restaurant in two of the remaining four units. However, much of his capital is tied up in his existing businesses, so he is seeking opportunities for investors or other loan programs. Please contact Village Manager Catherine Peterson directly for further information. Remember – our residents are our greatest resource!

As always, I encourage you to contact me or any of our officials with questions regarding any of the projects highlighted in the newsletter or that you might read about elsewhere.

Sincerely,

Erin


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