Senator Craig Wilcox Leads Off the Opposition to ComEd Bail Out/Electric Rate Hike Bill, Bill Passes, Roll Call

From state Senator Craig Wilcox:

Craig Wilcox

The RPS, or Renewable Portfolio Standards, collects a fee from every ComEd and Ameren customer bill and is deposited into the Renewable Portfolio Fund.

This bill doubles that fee to Subsidize renewables, but we didn’t change any of the RPS standards for credits, despite many known limitations and outright problems with the program after FEJA enacted it years ago.

We will still pay out based on installer estimates of production for solar arrays versus paying based
on validated production output.

This component of the bill costs ratepayers $360 million per year, adding up to $3.6 billion over the next ten years.

Will the benefits of the program outweigh that sizeable cost?

Specifically, will the investment in renewables:

1) lower our carbon footprint

2) sustain our electricity needs

3) help our struggling small businesses and families, or will we be back here in a few years
from now asking for more rate hikes because this energy bill is shortsighted?

FEJA never came close to producing enough renewable energy to meet the goals, and we significantly overpaid for it.

Thijs graphic was used before the Illinois General Assembly bailed out Exelon’s Clinton and Quad Cities nuclear plants in 2016.

We are on track to overpay again, and maybe put IL into a similar position that Europe is seeing now, skyrocketing energy prices when the renewables fail to produce as designed

While this bill fixes the solar cliff, ComEd has been rebating $1 million per day since the deadline passed, that rebating stops as soon as this bill is signed.

Will this be a case of some people getting a rebate and others not?

Will those who got rebates have to pay that money back?

We’ve also seen so many scandals under this dome with ethical standards being a constant problem, yet apparently we can’t find it in us to put ethical standards in place for wind and solar industries

What makes them above ethics requirements and reporting?

We had an opportunity to increase ethical standards for all of our energy companies that have proved to have such problems and remove legislators from the ratemaking process all together.

Yet this bill continues the ICC status quo and picks and chooses what companies need to follow ethical rules and requirements.

We also made no attempt to place carbon footprint goals on the production processes that occur all over the world to allow wind and solar to be installed in IL.

No discussion of the carbon footprint in the creation of renewable energy equipment, no discussion of strip-mining for Lithium, but we continue to push for Electrical Vehicles.

This was our chance to really change the way we work with utilities in Illinois.

We could have improved the process, made it stronger and more transparent, more ethical, and acknowledged the need to get greener deeper than just in IL, but that would have required more work and
apparently was not in the cards this time around.

Most importantly, we could have taken legislators out of the game all together, but instead, here we are, with another bailout bill that is going to be the greatest energy increase in Illinois history.

I urge a NO vote.

= = = = =

Here is the Senstr Roll Call:

Senate Roll Call on ComEd Bailout/Rate Hike legislation, SB 2408

The House Roll Call can be found here.


Senator Craig Wilcox Leads Off the Opposition to ComEd Bail Out/Electric Rate Hike Bill, Bill Passes, Roll Call — 9 Comments

  1. For those wondering,

    -Wilcox voted present the last time this issue came up but this time he voted no. I suspect the hollering on this blog got him to switch. The present vote last time was a bad move even though he won’t admit it. But this time he voted NO. (Wilcox, you need to get better consultants. Your “they’re making progress so I’m voting present” excuse last time was really lame.)

    -Rezin and Curran were the only two Republicans who voted yes.

    -Crowe was the only Democrat who voted no.

    -There were three Democrats who voted present (Collins; Simmons; and Turner, D).

    -There were two Democrats who did not vote: Harris and Morrison.

    Other than those exceptions, it was mainly along party lines with Democrats voting yes and Republicans voting no.

    Just a small piece of commentary:

    I think Rezin and Curran are really misguided for being held hostage to this bill over the nuclear power issue.

    I can understand why they want to save nuclear power plants, but how awful can a bill be for you to still vote for it just to get one thing you want?

    Democrats are trying to shut down fossil fuel, but that’s obviously acceptable to Rezin and Curran because the bill will save the nuclear plants (which Democrats will also want to shut down in a few years as more crazies take over the party).

    I don’t understand their thought process — or perhaps just disagree with it.

    What you’re signalling to Democrats is they can give you an ABOMINATION OF LEGISLATION but if they give you crumbs you’ll favor it.

    This is slavish mentality.

    I guess that’s the generous interpretation. The more cynical interpretation is that these people may have been paid off — and given some of Rezin’s donors (Exelon), that wouldn’t surprise me either.

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