2019 Illinois Compiled Statutes
Chapter 220 - UTILITIES
220 ILCS 5/ - Public Utilities Act.
Article XX - Retail Electric Competition



(220 ILCS 5/Art. XX heading)

ARTICLE XX. RETAIL ELECTRIC COMPETITION
(Source: P.A. 94-1095, eff. 2-2-07.)


(220 ILCS 5/20-101)
Sec. 20-101. This Article may be cited as the Retail Electric Competition Act of 2006.
(Source: P.A. 94-1095, eff. 2-2-07.)


(220 ILCS 5/20-102)
Sec. 20-102. Findings and intent.
(a) A competitive wholesale electricity market alone will not deliver the full benefits of competition to Illinois consumers. For Illinois consumers to receive products, prices and terms tailored to meet their needs, a competitive wholesale electricity market must be closely linked to a competitive retail electric market.
(b) To date, as a result of the Electric Service Customer Choice and Rate Relief Law of 1997, thousands of large Illinois commercial and industrial consumers have experienced the benefits of a competitive retail electricity market. Alternative electric retail suppliers actively compete to supply electricity to large Illinois commercial and industrial consumers with attractive prices, terms, and conditions.
(c) A competitive retail electric market does not yet exist for residential and small commercial consumers. As a result, millions of residential and small commercial consumers in Illinois are faced with escalating heating and power bills and are unable to shop for alternatives to the rates demanded by the State's incumbent electric utilities.
(d) The General Assembly reiterates its findings from the Electric Service Customer Choice and Rate Relief Law of 1997 that the Illinois Commerce Commission should promote the development of an effectively competitive retail electricity market that operates efficiently and benefits all Illinois consumers.
(Source: P.A. 94-1095, eff. 2-2-07.)


(220 ILCS 5/20-105)
Sec. 20-105. Definitions. In this Article:
"Director" means the Director of the Office of Retail

Market Development.

"Office" means the Office of Retail Market

Development.

(Source: P.A. 94-1095, eff. 2-2-07.)


(220 ILCS 5/20-110)
(Text of Section before amendment by P.A. 101-590)
Sec. 20-110. Office of Retail Market Development. Within 90 days after the effective date of this amendatory Act of the 94th General Assembly, subject to appropriation, the Commission shall establish an Office of Retail Market Development and employ on its staff a Director of Retail Market Development to oversee the Office. The Director shall have authority to employ or otherwise retain at least 2 professionals dedicated to the task of actively seeking out ways to promote retail competition in Illinois to benefit all Illinois consumers.
The Office shall actively seek input from all interested parties and shall develop a thorough understanding and critical analyses of the tools and techniques used to promote retail competition in other states.
The Office shall monitor existing competitive conditions in Illinois, identify barriers to retail competition for all customer classes, and actively explore and propose to the Commission and to the General Assembly solutions to overcome identified barriers. The Director may include municipal aggregation of customers and creating and designing customer choice programs as tools for retail market development. Solutions proposed by the Office to promote retail competition must also promote safe, reliable, and affordable electric service.
On or before June 30 of each year, the Director shall submit a report to the Commission, the General Assembly, and the Governor, that details specific accomplishments achieved by the Office in the prior 12 months in promoting retail electric competition and that suggests administrative and legislative action necessary to promote further improvements in retail electric competition.
(Source: P.A. 94-1095, eff. 2-2-07.)

(Text of Section after amendment by P.A. 101-590)
Sec. 20-110. Office of Retail Market Development. Within 90 days after the effective date of this amendatory Act of the 94th General Assembly, subject to appropriation, the Commission shall establish an Office of Retail Market Development and employ on its staff a Director of Retail Market Development to oversee the Office. The Director shall have authority to employ or otherwise retain at least 2 professionals dedicated to the task of actively seeking out ways to promote retail competition in Illinois to benefit all Illinois consumers.
The Office shall actively seek input from all interested parties and shall develop a thorough understanding and critical analyses of the tools and techniques used to promote retail competition in other states.
The Office shall monitor existing competitive conditions in Illinois, identify barriers to retail competition for all customer classes, and actively explore and propose to the Commission and to the General Assembly solutions to overcome identified barriers. The Director may include municipal aggregation of customers and creating and designing customer choice programs as tools for retail market development. Solutions proposed by the Office to promote retail competition must also promote safe, reliable, and affordable electric service.
On or before July 31 of each year, the Director shall submit a report to the Commission, the General Assembly, and the Governor, that details specific accomplishments achieved by the Office in the prior 12 months in promoting retail electric competition and that suggests administrative and legislative action necessary to promote further improvements in retail electric competition. On or before July 31, 2021 and each year thereafter, the report shall include the information submitted to the Commission pursuant to paragraph (iii) of subsection (a) of Section 16-115A.
(Source: P.A. 101-590, eff. 1-1-20.)


(220 ILCS 5/20-120)
Sec. 20-120. Residential and small commercial retail electric competition. Within 12 months after the effective date of this amendatory Act of the 94th General Assembly, the Director shall conduct research, gather input from all interested parties and develop and present to the Commission, the General Assembly, and the Governor a detailed plan designed to promote, in the most expeditious manner possible, retail electric competition for residential and small commercial electricity consumers while maintaining safe, reliable, and affordable service. Interested parties shall be given the opportunity to review the plan and provide written comments regarding the plan prior to its submission to the Commission, the General Assembly, and the Governor. Any written comments received by the Office shall be posted on the Commission's web site. The final plan submitted to the Commission, the General Assembly, and the Governor must include summaries of any written comments and must also be posted on the Commission's web site.
To the extent the plan calls for Commission action, the Commission shall initiate any proceeding or proceedings called for in the final plan within 60 days after receipt of the final plan and complete those proceedings within 11 months after their initiation.
Nothing in this Section shall prevent the Commission from acting earlier to remove identified barriers to retail electric competition for residential and small commercial consumers.
(Source: P.A. 94-1095, eff. 2-2-07.)


(220 ILCS 5/20-130)
Sec. 20-130. Retail choice and referral programs.
(a) The Commission shall have the authority to establish retail choice and referral programs to be administered by an electric utility or the State in which residential and small commercial customers receive incentives, including, but not limited to, discounted rate introductory offers for switching to participating electric suppliers.
(b) Reasonable costs associated with the implementation and operation of customer choice and referral programs may be recovered in an electric utility's distribution rates, except that any costs associated with any introductory discount for switching to a supplier shall be assumed by that supplier. Reasonable costs associated with the implementation and operation of a customer choice program may also be recovered from retail electric suppliers participating in a customer choice and referral program. In no event, however, shall the Commission mandate a cost recovery mechanism without first providing all interested parties notice and an opportunity to be heard in a hearing before the Commission.
(c) The Office of Retail Market Development shall serve as the clearinghouse for the development of retail choice and referral programs and shall work with electric utilities and interested parties on a continuous basis to implement and improve upon the programs. Nothing in this Section, however, shall prevent an electric utility on its own accord from implementing retail choice and referral programs.
(d) Only customers that qualify for utility service shall be eligible for retail choice and referral programs.
(e) The Office of Retail Market Development shall immediately upon the effective date of this amendatory Act of the 95th General Assembly explore for possible implementation on as expedited a basis as possible the following retail choice and referral programs:
(1) An introductory fixed discount program in which

suppliers participating in the program offer customers a fixed percentage discount off of the electric utility's supply rate for a set number of billing periods. Customers would be able to enroll in the program by using an online enrollment form, completing an enrollment card found in their monthly electric utility bill, or by calling a toll-free number. Customers would be free to withdraw from the program at any time and select another alternative retail electric supplier or return to the electric utility.

(2) A new customer program in which electric

utilities would offer consumers initiating new electric service a choice of offers from participating electric suppliers to provide the consumer's electric supply service. Customers expressing a preference for a specific electric supplier would be enrolled with that supplier. Customers not expressing a preference for a specific electric supplier would be offered the opportunity to enroll with an electric supplier selected randomly on a rotating basis.

(3) A customer service call center referral program

in which customers calling an electric utility's call center would be offered enrollment with an alternative retail electric supplier and informed that they have the option to receive immediate savings or introductory offers by participating in the referral program. Customers choosing to participate would be transferred to a customer service representative for the program and would either select the electric supplier from which they would like to take service or be placed with a participating electric supplier chosen at random on a rotating basis.

Nothing in this Section shall prevent the Office of Retail Market Development or the Commission from considering retail choice and referral programs in addition to the programs outlined in this Section.
(Source: P.A. 95-700, eff. 11-9-07.)


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