Friday, October 13, 2006

ComEd and Amerern’s ‘Reverse Auction’ must be stopped.

Statement by Dorian Breuer, Green Party candidate for Illinois State Senate, 1st District Wednesday, September 20, 2006
1856 S. Throop St. #2F, Chicago,IL 60608
Stephanie Lane, Campaign Manager, (773) 562-7492

The results of last Friday’s wholesale electricity reverse auction are disastrous: ComEd customers will receive a rate increase of 22 percent and Ameren customers an increase of 56 percent.

This must be stopped and I support SB 5766, a bill that would extend the current electricity rate freeze until the legislature can craft a plan that will protect consumers from the huge profit windfall Exelon and Ameren expect to receive.

Published reports state that SB 5766 is unlikely to pass the Senate, however, because State Senate President Emil Jones is not interested in passing the bill.

What has not been widely published is that that Exelon Corporation is the fourth largest campaign contributor to Emil Jones’ campaign fund with $30,000 in donations in the 2006 reporting period according to the website the Institute on Monday in State Politics. Not only that, but Electric Utilities in Illinois are the fifth largest industry to contribute to President Jones’ campaign with more than $55,000 in donations.

In fact since the 2002 election cycle, Emil Jones has received $100,000 in campaign donations directly from Exelon Corporation.

If President Jones was a Federal officeholder, those donations would be illegal.

Is it any wonder that the Illinois Senate is unlikely to consider SB 5766, a bill that would remove the massive profit windfall Friday’s reverse auction will bring to Exelon?

As a former member of the Board of Directors of the Citizen’s Utility Board for the 4th Congressional District, I saw first hand the anti-consumer tactics that Exelon has used in lobbying for this anti-consumer reverse auction.

Today I call on State Senate President Emil Jones to support SB 5766 while there is still time to protect the consumers of Illinois and to repair the impression that he is simply doing the bidding of one of his largest campaign contributors, the Exelon Corporation.

Green Party candidates refuse campaign contributions from corporations so that candidates once elected can pass legislation with only the interests of real people at heart.

If elected, I will work to sponsor and pass pro-consumer legislation like SB 5766 clear from all the corrupting influence of PAC and Corporate donations that course through the veins of Illinois politics.

I also support returning to the state’s regulation of the electric utilities as the only effective way to keep electricity rates low for Illinois’ consumers while also guaranteeing proper investment in our electricity infrastructure. Regulated monopolies can still earn a profit, they simply have to do it while ensuring the interest of consumers.


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