* As I told subscribers this morning, a House committee will vote today on an amendment to Sen. Gary Forby’s bill that will reattach ComEd to the Ameren-only rate rollback and freeze legislation.
A House committee is scheduled today to take up the legislation to freeze Ameren electric rates, Senate Bill 1592. A spokesman for House Speaker Michael Madigan said it could be amended to include ComEd, passed in the House and returned to the Senate for reconsideration as early as Friday.
* People agitating for a freeze also delivered petitions to Senate President Emil Jones…
Advocates delivered what they said were more than 23,000 petitions calling for rate relief to Senate President Emil Jonesâ€™ office after the news conference.
Rank-and-file lawmakers have grown increasingly frustrated with the battle between Jones, a major beneficiary of ComEd campaign contributions, and Madigan, who has supported a freeze since last fall.
Downstate lawmakers have been inundated with complaints from Ameren customers about skyrocketing utility bills they have received since a nearly 10-year-long rate freeze expired with the new year. A group of consumer advocates dumped petitions in Jones’ office Wednesday asking him to support a rate freeze.
“President Jones, do your job!” shouted Jeanne Lakin, a resident of Downstate Godfrey, who said her February electric bill nearly quadrupled to $717 from a year ago. “Be there for us! Enough politics have been played!”
Consumer groups also have warned that Chicago area ComEd customers are likely to see rapid increases in their bills once the summer air-conditioning season arrives.
* More utility-related stories, compiled by Paul Richardson…
* Disconnect notices sent out
* Comments made by angry Ameren customers prompt investigation
* Death threat of lawmaker spurred by electric rate hike
* Police could wrap up death threat probe this week