FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 1, 2021
Monika Wnuk, Associate State Director of Communications
312-458-3611 or cell: 312-402-5257
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
As Energy Bill Negotiations Continue, AARP Illinois and its Members Urge Legislators to Put Customers First
After the Illinois General Assembly failed to pass a utility reform bill during the regular Spring legislative session, and as negotiations continue, AARP Illinois issued the following statement from State Director Bob Gallo.
“With important utility issues still being negotiated, and mounting evidence that ComEd and other big utilities use unfair lobbying practices at the expense of customers, AARP Illinois implores legislators to move forward putting utility customers first."
AARP Illinois has heard from hundreds of members about the sacrifices they have made to pay their rising utility bills. People who have had to stay working long into retirement to keep up with increases. Residents who are on the brink of declaring bankruptcy because they are paying hundreds of dollars a month on utilities. A single mother with a thirteen-year-old son struggling to save the money needed for basic needs like medical bills, food, school cost and insurance. The rising utility bills are driving them deeper into debt, she said.
Currently, Illinois utility customers are millions of dollars behind on their utility bills. Meanwhile, ComEd is projected to make record profits this year, even after it admitted to a 10-year bribery scheme that cost consumers $5 billion dollars.
The rate schemes that only benefit the utility companies, bailouts for nuclear plants, forced electrification, and increased rate caps for ratepayers are just a few reasons that electric bills will steadily increase on the citizens who can least afford it.
AARP Illinois continues to support future legislation to:
- End formula rates and give the Illinois Commerce Commission back control over the ratemaking process;
- Stop additional nuclear bailouts for Exelon, which would lead to even further unfair electricity rates for you and other unsuspecting consumers;
- Put a stop to so-called “charitable contributions” by big utility companies that are actually giving away consumers’ money to make themselves seem benevolent;
- Enact strict ethics reforms and enhance oversight on utilities to ensure greater transparency and accountability and prevent any further illegal actions employed by utility companies that would lead to more ill-gotten rate increases;
- Oppose legislation that raises rates through questionable new spending.
All Illinois utility customers – and especially older adults on fixed incomes – deserve energy legislation that finally puts them first. AARP Illinois will continue to advocate for ratepayers, who deserve a clear and fair look into how we will move forward to guarantee affordable and reliable clean energy sources for residents.
Help AARP Illinois advocate for everyday consumers. Click here to share your story of how increasing utility costs have impacted you and we will forward it to your legislator!
Or Click to Tweet a legislator about utilities.