Illinois state legislature approves grid modernization plan


Richard J. Mark,
President and CEO,
Ameren Illinois
Springfield, IL, U.S.A. — (METERING.COM) — May 24, 2013 – Both the Illinois House of Representatives and Senate have voted overwhelmingly to overturn Governor Pat Quinn’s veto of Senate Bill 9, the so-called “smart grid bill” aimed to clarify existing legislation pertaining to the deployment of advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) and smart grid in the state.

As a result the law is now in effect.

Governor Quinn vetoed the bill earlier this month, arguing that the bill put the profits of the utilities ahead of the state’s families and businesses, and that it circumvented the oversight of the Illinois Commerce Commission.

Following the voting, Representative Lou Lang, chief House sponsor of SB 9, was quoted as saying the legislation will mean improved and more reliable electric service for Illinois residents, and it will create jobs and spur economic development.

In a response Richard J. Mark, president and CEO of Ameren Illinois, said that members of the General Assembly had been steadfast in calling for the development of an energy delivery system that meets today’s needs and prepares the state for future economic growth.

“I want to thank the Illinois Senate and House of Representatives for their support. This action will benefit consumers, create jobs, and inject new life into economies in Central and Southern Illinois.”

Similar sentiments were expressed by Anne Pramaggiore, president and CEO of ComEd, who added: “ComEd now can get the smart grid program back on track. We are starting immediately to accelerate smart meter installation and other work to improve reliability, provide new ways to save energy and money, and serve as a shot in the arm to our state’s economy.”

Governor Quinn continued to express his opposition, saying in a statement that he was disappointed the General Assembly did not protect consumers from overreaching by utility monopolies like ComEd and Ameren. “Today’s unfortunate vote forces electric utility rate hikes on families and businesses all across Illinois… This is bad for families, businesses and our economy.”