City Gets Green Light to Shop for Power
Sixty-six percent of Elmhurst voters say yes to electrical aggregation.
Elmhurst residents favored a proposal to allow the city to shop for electrical power on their behalf, by a margin of 5,300 to 2,767.
Approval of the March 20 referendum means the city will be able to negotiate for electrical power with suppliers on behalf of residential customers and small retail customers, without asking each customer individually. Group buying is expected to result in lower electrical bills for consumers, although there is no guarantee.
According to the city's explanation of the proposal on its website, residential and small commercial customers will still be able to opt out of the new arrangement. Two public hearings will be held before an aggregation plan is adopted. The city estimates it could have a program in place by late summer or early fall.
ComEd would continue to distribute power along its grid, sending out bills to customers and responding to outages.
A change in state law in 2009 allows for municipal electrical aggregation. According to Crain's Chicago Business, more than 200 communities in Northern Illinois had the question on the March 20 ballot.