Rep. Sosnowski statement on House passage of energy bill

State Representative Joe Sosnowski, R-Rockford, issued the following statement after the Illinois House of Representatives voted Thursday to approve energy legislation, Senate Bill 2408:

“The fact is that wind and solar account for less than 10% of Illinois’ total energy production, yet this bill provides hundreds of millions of dollars in annual subsidies for these industries at taxpayer expense. This bill more than doubles the existing rate cap for how much utility companies can charge consumers to fund these subsidies, which will cost Illinois residents and businesses an estimated $365 million more per year. The bottom line is, this bill represents the largest rate hike in state history, and families and job providers who are already looking elsewhere to locate will start feeling the impact of it on their monthly utility bill almost right away.”

“The General Assembly set a bad precedent five years ago when they bailed out Exelon to keep two aging, underproductive nuclear plants open. Taxpayers were forced to foot the bill as Exelon raked in record high corporate profits. We found out subsequently that ComEd officials had been bribing then-House Speaker Mike Madigan for several years before and after the 2016 bailout in exchange for favorable legislation, as revealed in the U.S. Attorney’s criminal investigation. This is essentially a repeat tax hike on residents to fund a bailout for a company.”

Senate Bill 2408 increases the existing Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) rate cap from 2.015% to 4.25% beginning January 1, 2022. Currently, roughly $235 million per year is collected for renewables through customer bills under the current rate cap. The new targeted RPS budget under the new rate cap and goals would be roughly $600 million per year. These funds will continue to be collected by utilities via ratepayer bills.

Representative Sosnowski serves the 69th District, which includes portions of Winnebago and Boone Counties.