AUSenergy News Update 06/18/2014
Jun 18, 2014

In today’s AUSenergy News Update: Cities stay with retail suppliers despite utility’s lower prices, Ohio freezes its energy efficiency and renewable energy mandates, and a probe of Illinois’ power market called for by Citizens Utility Board.


Cities stay with retail suppliers despite utility’s lower prices

Summary: Chicago, Aurora and Mount Prospect are among several communities that have chosen retail electric suppliers over ComEd, even though the current utility rate is lower than that of the rates offered by retail electric suppliers’. Aurora residents will pay 6% more than the ComEd rate in August, Mount Prospect 4% more, and Chicago single family homeowners could pay an average of 8% more.
AUS Comment: Communities that have decided to stay with competitive suppliers are counting on predictions that ComEd’s prices will change in the fall, and again in a year from now. Residents have the option of returning to ComEd or finding another supplier without paying a penalty. Residents should be aware that once they return to ComEd, they only have a 2 month window to choose another supplier, otherwise they are required to stay with ComEd for 12 months.


Ohio freezes its energy efficiency and renewable energy mandates

Summary: Ohio Governor, John Kasich, signed SB310 into law, effectively freezing the state’s energy efficiency and renewable energy mandates at 2014 levels until 2017. The bill creates a legislative study committee intended to study the effects of RPS and energy efficiency mandates and make recommendations on future changes.
AUS Comment: AUS views Ohio’s Senate Bill 310 as a bad bill, representing a major step backwards. Delaying energy efficiency and renewable energy mandates now is only going to make it more difficult for Ohio to try and catch up later.


Probe of Illinois’ power market called for by Citizens Utility Board

Summary: Complaints of confusing offers, misleading pitches, and prices as much as six times higher than the utility rate have prompted the City of Chicago and the Citizens Utility Board (CUB) to formally request a probe of the Illinois electric power market. The petition calls on the Illinois Commerce Commission (ICC) to investigate whether suppliers are complying with price-transparency provisions in Illinois’ Public Utilities Act.
AUS Comment: The CUB cites some of the worst cases of customers being led into bad agreements with alternative suppliers. AUS encourages residents to thoroughly review the terms and conditions of all agreements. Low misleading introductory offers, high variable renewal rates and hidden cancellation fees are all things to look for. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

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