The Commercial-News, Danville, IL

Local News

October 27, 2012

Nursing home future decided by Nov. 6 ballot

(Continued)

DANVILLE —

The nursing home was built in 1972, with an addition built in 1978.

--In the other question on next month’s ballot, local voters will be asked: “Shall Vermilion County, Illinois have the authority to arrange for the supply of electricity for its residential and small commercial retail customers who have not opted out of such a program?”

The Illinois General Assembly approved legislation in 2010 that allowed local governments to aggregate the electric power purchasing of residents. More than 200 communities passed aggregation referendums in the March primary election.

In the plan, the company buys electricity for large groups, a practice known as aggregation programs, and so receives a lower rate. It passes that lower rate along to the groups it represents. Integrys LLC was approved by the county board in September as the program provider if the resolution passes.

The program, if approved by voters in November, would only be available to Ameren customers. Co-op customers cannot take part.

In addition, the program would be considered an opt-out plan — meaning residents eligible for the plan could opt out of the program and not participate, leaving them open to work individually with another electrical aggregation provider.

According to a report from Integrys, 1,031 customers have signed up so far — 995 residents and 36 businesses. Overall, the 1,031 customers will save as much as $175,593 over the course of the contract, which ends in December.

The rates from Ameren Illinois stand at 6.13 to 6.18 cents per kilowatt hour. Through the electrical aggregation program, the Integrys rate for Vermilion County residents is 4.495 cents per kilowatt hour, or a savings of 26.7 to 27.3 percent.

The electrical aggregation program is intended to assist the county in dealing with expected costs it will be facing next year, specifically renovation of the county courthouse, which is expected to cost between $5-7 million for new elevators and repairs to a courthouse roof that has been leaking for 20 years.

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