Steve Smith of the Farnsworth Group, a power distribution company,
began by explaining that electric supply aggregation is a relatively
new process for residents of Illinois municipalities and counties
for buying power in the deregulated electric market -- called
"government aggregation." Smith added that Illinois law allows
municipalities and counties to arrange for the purchase of
electricity on behalf of residential and small-business customers
within their borders.
Darrell Knauer related that voters are being
asked in the election next week to decide whether or not to adopt
aggregation in their communities or counties. If the referendum is
approved, this will mean that the municipality, such as Mount
Pulaski, will select an electric supplier for its residents and
small businesses. However, as Knauer pointed out, each individual
customer may always choose not to participate at any time in the
Natalie Hemmer said that Ameren Illinois "will not be impacted
negatively or positively, as they will continue to provide the
delivery of our electrical energy." In Illinois, she said, customers
have the right to purchase electricity from a third-party retail
She and Smith explained that government aggregation is just one
additional form of electric choice that many municipalities and
counties are making available to consumers. The referendum measure
on the upcoming ballot, they explained, will be an "opt-out," which,
if passed, will have residents and small businesses automatically
enrolled in the aggregation program, unless they choose not to
participate, or opt-out.
Hemmer said Ameren Illinois "does not profit from energy supply
She continued: "We are neutral as to whether a town, county or
individual customer chooses another electric provider. We do not
recommend one electricity supplier over another, but we do encourage
customers to explore all of their supply options."
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If a consumer opts-out, Ameren Illinois "will continue to
purchase power for customers who do not choose another provider or
choose to opt-out of the government aggregation plan," she said.
Hemmer and Smith said citizens should compare the supply pricing
offered by various retail electric suppliers. One way is to visit
Customers may find out the price they are currently paying in their
rate zone by visiting the website
A couple of questions were asked:
Question 1: How can Mount Pulaski get an additional line of
electricity coming into our community like Latham has?
Hemmer responded that this is being looked into. Itís not a new
question, but rather an old problem that is currently being
discussed and options explored. She did add that Mount Pulaski is
just one of many communities that have only one avenue of energy.
Question 2: What is the root source of most of our energy?
Hemmer responded that this is outlined in the brochure enclosed
in monthly statements, or go to
She went on to say that much or most of the energy source
currently is coal. But, a law was recently passed specifying that by
2025, "25 percent of all electrical energy must be derived from
non-fossil fuels, such as wind and solar." That is why there are so
many wind turbines going up in Illinois, she added.
[Text from file received from Phil Bertoni]