Municipal Electric Aggregation

Residential Aggregation Program

Overview – What is municipal aggregation of electricity?
Aggregation in general refers to many customers joining together to form a buying group. Municipal aggregation refers specifically to the situation where a municipality organizes the pooling of its citizens to become the buying group. The municipality then seeks out offers on behalf of its constituents to get better pricing, terms and services than would be available to an individual.  Similar to garbage collection contracts, the municipality will have the authority to negotiate on behalf of its entire community.Why is this possible?
The State of Illinois amended the deregulation legislation allowing municipalities to aggregate their residential and small business.  Through deregulation, municipalities can seek competitive bids for the energy and move to other suppliers if their pricing is more attractive. ComEd is no longer the only company that supplies electricity, but everyone continues to use ComEd to deliver the power, even if it is purchased by other suppliers.

How does it work?
In order for the Village to create a municipal aggregation program, a referendum must be approved by a majority of voters. In March 20, 2012 the Forest Park Referendum was passed.

How does this affect ComEd?
ComEd will continue to bill you.  ComEd will continue to respond to power outages. 

How Do I Enroll?
You do not have to do anything to enroll. All eligible residents and small businesses will be automatically included in the program unless they choose to "opt-out." A letter will be sent with details of the price and terms prior to any enrollment. If you do not respond to the letter sent to you, Commonwealth Edison will complete the enrollment process. However, if you do not want to enroll in the program, you have until a specific date, to opt-out.  * New residents must enroll - See below for instruction.

Will I get two bills?
No, you will continue to get one bill from ComEd. You will continue to send your monthly payment to ComEd.

Does the aggregation program affect the reliability of ComEd service?   
No.  The aggregation program will have no impact upon the reliability of service you receive from ComEd.

Will I still be a ComEd customer?
Yes.  ComEd still provides the distribution of electricity and will still be responsible for delivery services: reading meters, maintaining equipment, responding to outages, etc.

What if I have already selected another electric supplier?
If you have already signed up for another power supplier on your own, you will not be included in the aggregation program.  You may, however, opt-out of your current program and then join the Village’s program.  You should first determine if your current supplier would charge an early termination fee to move.

What constitutes a small commercial business?
Currently, “small commercial” is defined as an account having a peak demand of 100kW.  A typical McDonalds is about 50kW.  But this definition is being challenged at the ICC currently and may be re-defined by the ICC at a much smaller level.

Are there any downsides to municipal aggregation?
A municipality is not obligated to accept unfavorable bids, and any individual account holder could opt out of the program.  If bids do not realize savings, they could be rejected and the residents would remain unchanged at ComEd.  There is no obligation for the municipality to accept any bid.

Resources:
Public Act 096-0176 – Amendment to Illinois Power Agency Act (PDF)
Chicago Tribune - Consumers making the switch
Plug In Illinois
Citizen's Utility Board
List of Communities with an Opt-Out Municipal Aggregation Program

Effective August 2014, the Village's electric supply company is Integrys at a fixed rate of 7.652 cents/kWh through August, 2017.  Integrys customer service can be reached at 855-310-5455. * Integrys Energy was merged with Constellation New Energy in 2015.  In June of 2016 a change in law regarding "Capacity Perfomance" allowed for an increase in the transmission of electric energy supply, affecting the rate. The new rate is $0.08116 /kWh.

If any new residents are interested in participating in the Forest Park Aggregation Program, the website portal is an easy way to sign up for the program. The web site is www.integrysenergy.com/aggregation/il-forestpark.   

Please know, new residents are automatically enrolled in the default service ComEd rate and need to sign up for the Aggregation program if they choose to participate in the Village's program.

For more information about electricity aggregation, contact Village Administrator Tim Gillian at 708-615-6201.