SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax      Advertise Here      Mobile Version     Exclusive Subscriber Content     Updated Posts    Contact
To subscribe to Capitol Fax, click here.
Déjà vu all over again… and again

Thursday, Feb 14, 2013

* A Senate committee voted unanimously this week to give ComEd what it wants

Illinois legislators already gave Commonwealth Edison and Ameren the go-ahead to raise rates, in 2011. They passed a law over Governor Pat Quinn’s objections that changes the formula used to determine what the companies can charge. The new formula was supposed to get ComEd and Ameren more money they could use to pay for improvements to the electric grid.

But the utilities say it didn’t work as intended. They say regulators aren’t letting them charge what they need.

Now the companies are back , asking the legislature to pass another law, clarifying the old one. […]

Consumer watchdogs, like Scott Musser of AARP, say the new proposal is an end run around the courts and regulators.

* And now Peoples Gas wants in on the action

Peoples-backed legislation introduced in the Illinois Senate Wednesday would permit the natural gas utility serving Chicago to boost delivery rates up to 5 percent annually over the next decade.

In return, Peoples would commit to a $1.2 billion infrastructure program centered on replacing the aging cast-iron pipes underneath city streets. Under the bill, that program would have to create at least 1,000 jobs at its peak. […]

As controversial as the “smart grid” law that allowed ComEd to hike rates annually was, this bill may be even more so.

“We have serious concerns with what we’ve seen,” said David Kolata, executive director of consumer watchdog Citizens Utility Board. “Say what you will about the smart grid law, at least it had some measures in it that really are beneficial for consumers. We don’t see anything like that in this bill. We certainly don’t want to see it become law.”

The smart grid, if done right, would be very good for Illinois. Upgrading natural gas infrastructure would also be good for the state. A modern, functional infrastructure is absolutely crucial to a healthy economy, and infrastructure ain’t free, but that price tag does look awful high for no apparent reason other than ComEd got a similar deal for doing a lot more.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - Small Town Liberal - Thursday, Feb 14, 13 @ 1:22 pm:

    - awful high for no apparent reason other than ComEd got a similar deal for doing a lot more. -

    I don’t believe that’s accurate. Peoples has approximately 2000 miles of cast iron pipe (about half their total) in the ground, some dating back to the 1880s. They were aggressively pursuing a 20 year replacement schedule until a rider added to customer bills was overturned.

    These leaky cast iron mains are dangerous and cost an enormous amount in maintenance each year, and replacing buried pipelines in an urban area like Chicago is extremely expensive.

    ComEd got what they wanted, and now want more. I think there’s a difference.

  2. - Pfft_-_ - Thursday, Feb 14, 13 @ 1:33 pm:

    Whatever happened to the cost of doing business? Nowadays it’s more like “Gladly give me a dollar today and maybe I’ll give you a hamburger tomorrow.”

  3. - Abe the Babe - Thursday, Feb 14, 13 @ 1:50 pm:

    -The smart grid, if done right, would be very good for Illinois. Upgrading natural gas infrastructure would also be good for the state.-

    These bills were and always have been about regulatory reform and not so much about modernizing our grid. The above statement assumes that current laws and regs don’t provide avenues to recover infrastructure expenses in a timely manner. If they want infastructure spending recovered even faster then that could be done. But don’t come down to Springfield and cry jobs and smart meters when it’s really about executive bonuses, inflated costs of equity, fictitious pension assets, and weak performance standards. If these bills were such good public policies then why the need to spend $20 million in lobbying and advertising to pass the bill?

  4. - RNUG - Thursday, Feb 14, 13 @ 2:05 pm:

    Since it’s supposedly good enough for the state retirees, let the businesses get the same for their needs - 1/2 of the CPI-U capped at 3% maximum.

  5. - Loop Lady - Thursday, Feb 14, 13 @ 2:31 pm:

    The overt greed of ComEd never ceases to amaze me…
    Let’s see if the GA does their bidding for them yet again.

  6. - wordslinger - Thursday, Feb 14, 13 @ 2:40 pm:

    ComEd has the clout.

    In addition to campaign contributions, they have an awful lot of jobs to fill. I’m sure recommendations from legislators help.

  7. - walkinfool - Thursday, Feb 14, 13 @ 3:35 pm:

    Com Ed’s got the most effective allies and lobbyists in S’field.

    Fair? What’s that got to do with it?

    People’s has a better case on the merits.

  8. - other guy - Thursday, Feb 14, 13 @ 3:45 pm:

    what happened to natural gas prices going down due to all the fracking?

  9. - Abe the Babe - Thursday, Feb 14, 13 @ 3:52 pm:

    “People’s has a better case on the merits.”

    Not true. People’s has a worse case. At least on the electric side you have the potential benefits to consumers through peak time pricing, energy efficiency, and smart meters. I dont believe you needed formula rates to provide these but at least there was some rationale to the smart grid bill.

    The peoples bill is simply all infastructure. They want regulatory relief for something they are required by law to do now and something they should have been investing in already.

  10. - Going nuclear - Thursday, Feb 14, 13 @ 4:17 pm:

    In the old days, the ICC would hold extensive hearings to rule on a rate hike request. Now the utilities are coming to the legislature to guarantee a rate hike or set up a process for automatic increases. This is not a good trend. We all want to see the electric and gas infrastructure updated, but there should be an open, deliberate process to make sure the utilities justify the increases they need.

  11. - Judgment Day - Thursday, Feb 14, 13 @ 5:16 pm:

    “what happened to natural gas prices going down due to all the fracking?”

    That’s related to the price of fuel. This is all about infrastructure (pipes, pumps, backup electrical capability, software/hardware digital controls for flow management, etc., etc.). Also hopefully) an expansive inventory of spare parts and backup equipment in case primary systems fail.

    What I’d be interested in is how much of this is going to require major digging programs to replace the existing deteriorating underground lines, and if any type of liners using existing piping would function as a feasible alternative.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

* More awful pension news
* Question of the day
* New Exelon bailout bill emerges
* Kirk apologizes to Duckworth
* Some budget hostages finally released
* Starving the beast
* Will the anti-Madigan stuff work?
* Rate the new anti Rauner/Trump TV ad
* The reviews are in... and they're lousy
* SUBSCRIBERS ONLY - Supplement to today’s edition
* SUBSCRIBERS ONLY - Today's edition of Capitol Fax (use all CAPS in password)
* Yesterday's blog posts

Visit our advertisers...






Search This Blog...

Search the 98th General Assembly By Bill Number
(example: HB0001)

Search the 98th General Assembly By Keyword

* FCC establishes ISP privacy rules for mining customer data
* Microsoft Surface, New MacBook Pro, and Google’s Pixel Packs Power | #PNWeekly 224
* Gfycat brings its higher quality GIFs and DIY creation tools to iMessage
* One big battery for the Moto M rumored
* Xiaomi Redmi 4 passes through TENAA
* Verizon and EE Google Pixels get a bootloader unlock trick
* Popular Garmin Forerunner 230 GPS running watch on sale for $210, chest strap included

* White Sox in AFL: Collins shores up defense
* Unlike some, White Sox still remember 2005
* Eaton named Gold Glove Award finalist
* One possible White Sox future playing out in Toronto
* pnoles' offseason plan
* Three times the 2005 White Sox never happened on Monday
* White Sox developing promising OF prospects


Main Menu
Pundit rankings
Subscriber Content
Blagojevich Trial
Updated Posts

October 2016
September 2016
August 2016
July 2016
June 2016
May 2016
April 2016
March 2016
February 2016
January 2016
December 2015
November 2015
October 2015
September 2015
August 2015
July 2015
June 2015
May 2015
April 2015
March 2015
February 2015
January 2015
December 2014
November 2014
October 2014
September 2014
August 2014
July 2014
June 2014
May 2014
April 2014
March 2014
February 2014
January 2014
December 2013
November 2013
October 2013
September 2013
August 2013
July 2013
June 2013
May 2013
April 2013
March 2013
February 2013
January 2013
December 2012
November 2012
October 2012
September 2012
August 2012
July 2012
June 2012
May 2012
April 2012
March 2012
February 2012
January 2012
December 2011
November 2011
October 2011
September 2011
August 2011
July 2011
June 2011
May 2011
April 2011
March 2011
February 2011
January 2011
December 2010
November 2010
October 2010
September 2010
August 2010
July 2010
June 2010
May 2010
April 2010
March 2010
February 2010
January 2010
December 2009
November 2009
October 2009
September 2009
August 2009
July 2009
June 2009
May 2009
April 2009
March 2009
February 2009
January 2009
December 2008
November 2008
October 2008
September 2008
August 2008
July 2008
June 2008
May 2008
April 2008
March 2008
February 2008
January 2008
December 2007
November 2007
October 2007
September 2007
August 2007
July 2007
June 2007
May 2007
April 2007
March 2007
February 2007
January 2007
December 2006
November 2006
October 2006
September 2006
August 2006
July 2006
June 2006
May 2006
April 2006
March 2006
February 2006
January 2006
December 2005
April 2005
March 2005
February 2005
January 2005
December 2004
November 2004
October 2004

Blog*Spot Archives
November 2005
October 2005
September 2005
August 2005
July 2005
June 2005
May 2005


RSS Feed 2.0
Comments RSS 2.0


* Rauner: More funds needed for breast screenings.....
* Election 2016: Campaign cash flows into central.....
* Rate the new anti Rauner/Trump TV ad - The Capi.....
* Meet the man most likely to raise your taxes in.....
* Meet the man most likely to raise your taxes in.....
* Rauner Republicans face challenges turning Madi.....

* Oil pipeline protesters burn vehicles, set roadblock
* The Latest: Protesters use burned vehicles to block highway
* The Latest: Tribal chairman vows to continue pipeline fight
* EXCHANGE: She got polio as a baby, now on way to stardom
* CTA to run vintage car in advance of Cubs' Series games
* AP News Guide: Pipeline activists swept off private property
* Latest: More than 100 arrests as pipeline protesters moved
* Researchers see bat populations decline in Illinois
* Researchers see bat populations decline in Illinois
* Police evict oil pipeline protesters from private land

* Bobcat hunting opponents seek permits, won't use them
* Opponents emerge against Illinois road fund ballot question
* Feds end lease with Illinois for state park, citing neglect
* Statehouse Insider: Tomorrow's a new day; in Illinois, that may not be good
* Cook County lawyer who posed as judge criminally charged
* 1,100 non-union state workers getting $3,016 bonuses
* Springfield veteran honored for volunteer work
* Central Illinois soldier killed in Afghanistan
* Rauner administration awarding more than $3 million in bonuses to non-union workers
* SIU injury-prevention program reinstated through stopgap budget

* Even bankers are balking, Gannett
* Boeing CEO's goals don't stop at interplanetary travel
* Mammoth energy bill emerges as clock ticks on nuke closures
* Best new steakhouses 2016
* Collectors champing at the bit for champion Cubs collectibles

* PODCAST: What does Jeremy Langford’s return mean for Bears RBs?
* Extensive parking restrictions, street closures in Wrigleyville
* Caretaker charged with stealing jewelry from Northbrook home
* Glenview man wins $700K lottery prize
* Driver charged in Milwaukee crash that killed 3 Chicago women
* Metra: 3 UP lines to be slowed by 10 minutes for rail work
* Clinton, Donald Trump Iowa deadlock: new swing state poll
* Obama guidance, press schedule Oct. 28, 2016. Orlando for Hillary
* Obama guidance, press schedule Oct. 28, 2016. Orlando for Hillary
* Man shot on Eisenhower exit ramp near West Garfield Park

* Bill Murray to sing 7th inning stretch, Fall Out Boy's Patrick Stump takes anthem
* Wrigley rooftops' quirky past preceded big business, sour relationship with Cubs
* International Cubs fans cheer North Siders from afar
* Young black voters still split on Clinton, but many coming around if only to defeat Trump
* Mystery in Goose Island: Who killed 2 business partners from south suburbs?
* Religious high schools not allowed to hold public prayer before playoff game due to IHSA rule
* Halloween 2016: 'A chance to play for adults' as the Joker, Hillary or Trump
* Addison stop, 'L' line has colorful Cub history
* Emanuel's Law Department sanctioned again for not disclosing police files

The widget AQL4JYGHIY powered by Feed Informer does not exist.

* Our View: U.S. Rep. Rodney Davis deserves third term
* John Bouman: We all suffer from Illinois' budget crisis
* Eugene Robinson: Hillary Clinton is blazing a momentous trail
* George Will: Republican Party needs to revert to nominating Republicans
* Bernard Schoenburg: 9 on Sangamon County Board opt out of pension system
* Bobcat hunting opponents seek permits, won't use them
* Opponents emerge against Illinois road fund ballot question
* Our Opinion: LaHood endorsed in 18th Congressional District
* Leroy Jordan: Race Riot site must be preserved, taught to students
* E.J. Dionne: Trump is not a GOP aberration

* Noon update: Elevated field-fire risk, deadly crash, and trick or treat
* Williamson County Sheriff seeking suspect in Colp storage unit burglary
* Kids' flu clinic, firefighter challenge set for Saturday
* 2nd person dies in RI shooting
* Two attorneys campaigning to be next Perry County State's Attorney
* Daily Digest 10/28/16
* Lack of choice in health insurance markets a growing problem
* No injuries when Pence plane slides off N.Y. runway
* Kirk mocks Duckworth family's military past
* U.S. economy grew at 2.9% rate in third quarter

* Healthy advice for coping with disappointment
* Chicago icons Bill Murray, Billy Williams get World Series spotlight
* 6 years in prison for 2015 South Elgin scissors attack, attempted murder
* Marklund, Little Angels service agencies complete merger
* Camping World acquires Quality RV in Minnesota

* House lawmakers overcome hurdle on key tra...
* Rodney Davis talks funding with Bloomingto...
* The agency that fought Illiana gets a new ...
* Rep. Dold takes educational cruise down Ch...
* Lawmakers decry high turnover rate of VA h...
* CBD Oil, and politics
* Simon considering state Senate bid
* Killer Congressman Tom MacArthur trying to...
* Shutdown? State may not notice
* Rep. Bob Dold

* Durbin visits 'extraordinary' Lake County ......

* US Sen. Mark Kirk jabs Rep. Tammy Duckwort......
* Hillary Clinton Defends Duckworth, Slams K......
* Mark Kirk apologizes for using Tammy Duckw......
* The Latest: Kirk sorry for mocking rival's......
* Mark Kirk apologizes for using Tammy Duckw......

* Kirk Under Fire For 'Racist' Remarks About Duckworth's Family Military Service
* Unemployment Rates Up In Half Of Illinois Metro Areas
* Cook County Board Passes Minimum Wage Increase To $13
* City Club Of Chicago Budget Panel
* Windy City Aldermen Talk Municipal Budget, Chicago Cubs At Panel Discussion
* Over 485,000 Early Votes Cast Thus Far In Illinois
* Cook Co Commish alerts biz owners to possible mandated 58% pay hike for employees
* Kirk shocks by ridiculing Duckworth's heritage during Springfield debate
* Anonymous group reveals why they're opposed to Illinois Policy Institute
* Biga: Forget Roman Empire, U.S. now eerily similar to Late Imperial China

* Don’t be a Ghoul, Don’t Drink and Drive - Police throughout Illinois step up patrols for Halloween weekend
* Honoring Illinois' Fallen - United States and State flags at half-staff from Sunrise, Saturday, October 29, 2016 until Sunset, Monday, October 31, 2016.
* 25th Annual HIV/STD Conference - Celebrating Success, Shaping the Future - Sexually Transmitted Diseases increase while HIV decreases
* Workers’ Comp Commission Updates Technology at No Cost to Taxpayer - Another step in Rauner Administration’s modernization of state government
* Governor’s Children’s Cabinet Makes Lead Poisoning Prevention A Priority - October 23-30, 2016 - National Lead Poisoning Prevention Week

      Hosted by MCS SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax Advertise Here Mobile Version Contact Rich Miller