Selling out cheap. 

SB1652 supposedly guarantees Illinois power delivery moves into the 21st Century, just like California and most of the Northeast. Nevermind the states that have moved forward on Smart Grid type technologies now have the highest electricity rates. Never mind the obvious logic that if it would make power delivery more efficient and cost effective, power companies looking to lower cost and increase returns would find the financing to impliment it. Nevermind most states that have stood pat, like Kentucky, Indiana, Iowa, and Missouri, have industrial rates 24-25% lower than Illinois, making them even more competetive for manufacturing and the jobs that follow. Never mind that ComEd, serving over 3.7 million customers at 10.9 cents/KwH, rakes in over $4.5 billion in annual revenue. By the way, size doesn’t matter: Naperville Electrical Department (NED) serves 56 thousand accounts, at 8.82 cents/KwH, almost 20% cheaper than ComEd.*

Is private risk for private profit a foreign concept in Illinois? Baseball teams get lavish deals on taxpayers tabs. The Chicago Park District gets a football stadium built with state tax dollars. Power companies have taxpayers pay ahead on rquired upgrades to their systems instead of taking on the risk and debt themselves. Our leaders socialize the costs out of our wallets, yet still privatize the profits back to the companies we pick up the tab for.

Why stop there, though? The Illinois GA this week also guarantees a profit every step of the way for these private companies. No risk, yet guaranteed private profit. Wouldn’t we all like that kind of investment? I bet the teachers would right about now. That such a skewed result of legislation gets the limelight, while no budget fixes, or pension fixes that actually address the problem remain completely unaddressed, doesn’t matter. What matters in Illinois? That both sides of the General Assembly aisle got to slop at the trough of lobby money. For less than a penny on the dollar, Ameren, Exelon, and ComEd have locked in billions of future profits, by simply buying the votes of most of the Illinois General Assembly.

The Illinois Campaign for Political Reform collates and creates a sortable database of who buys what in Illinois. so far just in 2011 the three power companies have walked the halls of Springfield and handed out the goodies, the grease that keeps incumbent campaigns running, that keeps caucuses loyal, and that keeps business as usual churning away.

Results for 2011

Ameren gave $ 103,408.00
Ameren CILCO gave 
$ 1,000.00
$ 2,500.00
Ameren CILCO gave 
$ 19,700.00
Ameren CILCO c/o Michael Sullivan gave 
$ 2,000.00
Ameren CIPS PAC gave 
$ 3,000.00
Ameren Government Relations Dept gave 
$ 1,000.00
Ameren IL PAC gave 
$ 8,250.00
Ameren IL. PAC gave 
$ 1,000.00
Ameren Illinois gave 
$ 94,651.00
Ameren Illinois PAC gave 
$ 151,399.00
Ameren Illinois Utilities gave 
$ 1,000.00
Ameren PAC gave 
$ 1,500.00
Ameren, IL gave 
$ 1,000.00
AmerenCilco gave 
$ 500.00
AmerenIllinois gave 
$ 3,500.00
AmerenIllinois PAC gave 
$ 1,000.00
Amerenn CILCO gave 
$ 2,500.00

Sub total all Ameren: $398,908

Results for 2011
ComEd gave 
$ 10,117.00
ComEd PAC gave 
$ 77,550.00
ComEd PAC Attn. Cheryl L. Hyman gave 
$ 8,000.00
ComEd PAC. gave 
$ 250.00
ComEdPAC gave 
$ 47,200.00

Sub total all ComEd: $143,117 

Results for 2011
Commonwealth Edison Co- Affiliate of Exelon Corp, PAC gave 
$ 500.00
Exelon gave 
$ 9,250.00
Exelon Gen Pac gave 
$ 500.00
Exelon Generation gave 
$ 1,000.00
Exelon Generation Co gave 
$ 500.00
Exelon Generation Company gave 
$ 9,750.00
Exelon Generation Company LLC gave 
$ 5,000.00
Exelon Generation Company PAC gave 
$ 8,500.00
Exelon Generation Company, LLC gave 
$ 4,750.00
Exelon Generation Copmpany gave 
$ 250.00
Exelon Generation PAC gave 
$ 4,000.00
Exelon Generaton Company PAC gave 
$ 1,000.00
Exelon PAC gave 
$ 8,750.00
Exelon-Commonwealth Edison Company gave 
$ 2,000.00
Exelonpac gave 
$ 1,000.00

Sub total all Exelon: $56,750

Total all contributions for 2011 only: $598,775

House votes are here, Senate votes are here.


US Senator Kirk’s Debt Report

“While Illinois is an American state with substantially stronger institutions than Europe, its debt load per person is higher than for citizens in Spain, Portugal, Ireland or Greece.”
Click on the cover page to read the report.