Shorewood advances electric aggregation program
By Clare Walters For The Herald-News May 10, 2012 8:00AM
Updated: June 14, 2012 8:13AM
SHOREWOOD — Village officials adopted measures Tuesday officially allowing the village to solicit electricity rates on behalf of residents.
The board unanimously approved a resolution and two ordinances creating governance for electrical aggregation, formalizing an opt-out provision for residents and granting the Will Electric Aggregation Group the authority to aggregate power on behalf of the village.
Shorewood voters approved a referendum earlier this year giving the village permission to implement such measures.
With Shorewood’s approval of the intergovernmental agreement, it formally joins the Will Electric Aggregation Group, a collection of Will County governmental bodies brought together by the Will County Governmental League. The group was designed to leverage the buying power of its members for reduced electricity rates.
Like all communities in the group, Shorewood will be given one vote on group matters. Mayor Richard Chapman represents the village on the group’s board.
Once bids are sought and a supplier is selected, Shorewood residents can choose whether to participate in the aggregation program, officials said. Residents automatically will be enrolled but can opt out if they desire. Instructions on how to opt out will be sent by mail. There is no fee or penalty for opting out, according to the group’s plan of operation and governance.
Chapman said while he can’t promote the program to residents, he personally will not be opting out.
“I’m going to be in on the program,” he said. “I can’t promote it, but I’m going to be there.”
Officials expect aggregation to result in noteworthy reductions to resident electric bills, and Trustee Jim McDonald said he’s heard of people saving as much as 40 percent.
“That’s a hefty savings,” he said. “I have not heard anything negative from anyone who’s entered this type of program so far.”
The Will Electric Aggregation Group expects to go to bid in June.