EDITORIALS

You have a voice in the choice

Staff Writer
Woodford Times

Illinois’ legislators have given Woodford County voters a choice.

The choice revolves around electricity. It has been some time since anyone had a choice about electricity in this region. The question now is whether voters will take advantage of it  

Before energy deregulation central Illinois residents had no choice about electricity. It came from CILCO.

After energy deregulation — and a meteoric rise in prices — a choice suddenly appeared although it wasn’t a pleasant one.

That choice was whether to fall on your face or your posterior when opening the light bill.

An electric aggregation referendum, that will be on the March 20 ballot, boiled down amounts to giving central Illinois residents the opportunity to shop for cheaper electricity, possibly up to 25 percent cheaper than that offered by Ameren.  

If voters pass the referendum they will be able to take advantage of deregulated electricity markets.

The idea is that increased competition lowers energy costs.

And, following the idea of “The more, the merrier,” combining the buying power of many communities means the potential for greater savings rises.   

To play in this game, and see if lower prices can be realized, voters must turn out.  

Choices do not end there, because even if the referendum passes one can still opt out and stay with Ameren.

Once a supplier is selected consumers will, by law, be notified of the price offered and be given the opportunity to opt out of the program.

After the first bill arrives customers can again opt out within five days.

After that a customer can again opt out of the program for a small fee.

Vote and you have a voice in the choice.

Fail to vote and someone else will make a choice for you.