IL residents rally around legislation to slow energy rate hikes

Residents are seeing increases in utility bills
Dozens rallied in Springfield Tuesday in support of legislation that could possibly slow energy rate hikes.
Published: Mar. 22, 2023 at 6:26 PM CDT
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METRO EAST (KMOV) - Dozens rallied in Springfield Tuesday in support of legislation that could possibly slow energy rate hikes.

Chicago-based Blacks in Green was one of the organizations protesting soaring utility bills in Illinois.

The group is supporting the People’s Utility Rate Relief Act. The bill intends to add affordability criteria to the considerations for the Illinois Commerce Commission (ICC). Specifically, senior citizens and people with children are people who the bill intends to provide relief for.

The ICC is the state organization that approves or denies rate hikes for energy companies like Ameren Illinois.

“We’re asking that the Illinois Commerce Commission specifically factor affordability into--and explain how they’re factoring affordability into the rate cases,” said Naomi Davis, founder of Blacks in Green.

“No one wants to see higher energy bills,” said Marcelyn Love, spokesperson for Ameren Illinois. “So, it’s economics, you know, when you have higher demand and lower supply, then that results in increase in price.”

Ameren Illinois submitted a four-year plan to the ICC asking for rate hikes totaling millions of dollars.

“So, we understand that there is no good time to propose this type of an adjustment or to make these investments. Higher costs are affecting all of us,” Love said.

Ameren only delivers gas and electricity for suppliers. According to Ameren Illinois, suppliers are increasing prices because there isn’t enough energy supply as the state moves toward cleaner energy.