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Special Report: 100+ Northern IL community power deals more expensive than ComEd

CUB's Jim Chilsen tells Dorothy Tucker that in the current electric market, ComEd may be your best bet.

CUB’s Jim Chilsen tells Dorothy Tucker that in the current electric market, ComEd may be your best bet.

CUB told CBS 2 Chicago that more than 100 community power deals in Northern Illinois are charging a higher price than ComEd.

It’s another sign of how much Illinois’ electricity market has changed in just a few years, and, as CBS 2 reported, it’s a good reason to look at your power bill. In this market, there’s a good chance ComEd will be your best deal.

Under state law, community leaders are allowed to negotiate an electricity price with an alternative supplier on behalf of their constituents. “Municipal Aggregation,” as it’s called, takes a “Costco” approach to buying electricity: Just as the wholesale chain secures lower prices for household items by buying in bulk, aggregation is designed to secure lower electricity prices through the collective buying power of a community’s residents.

Community power deals have secured millions of dollars in savings for people, and a big reason is because ComEd was locked into higher priced electricity contracts in past years. Now that those contracts have ended it’s much more difficult for communities to secure significant savings for their residents.

Here’s what CUB found during an April 1 review of PlugInIllinois.org, the state of Illinois’ electric choice website.

*Number of municipal aggregation deals in northern Illinois: 273 (includes cities, townships, counties)

*Number of municipal aggregation deals in ComEd territory that currently have prices higher than ComEd:  116

*The top five highest-priced  offers:

Aurora, Homefield Energy, 8.086, through August 2016

Mount Prospect, Homefield Energy, 7.935, through August 2016, then 7.499 through August 2017

Warrenville, Constellation Energy, 7.89, through August 2017

Justice, Constellation Energy, 7.89, through August 2017

Lanark, Homefield Energy, 7.852 through August 2016, then 7.245 through August 2017

There are still a lot of towns that have rates that are lower than ComEd. However, we’ve heard that more communities, such as Wilmette, will be joining the 66 that have already let their deals expire and have said goodbye to aggregation.

CUB has a great free tool, the Power Calculator, that can help you compare your community power deal with ComEd’s rate over the last year. Check it out!