Electric Rate Hike Extension Bill Likely To Be Left In Rauner's Lap

Jan 9, 2015

Sen. President John Cullerton has kept a "motion to reconsider" on a measure that extends an electric rate formula since it passed the General Assembly in December.
Credit www.ilga.gov

The president of the Illinois Senate is continuing to withhold a piece of legislation from Gov. Pat Quinn.

At the tail end of its session, members of the General Assembly rushed to pass a measure that makes it easier for Illinois' big utilities, Ameren and Commonwealth Edison, to charge more for delivering power.

The companies say it's necessary so they can continue to improve the electric grid. But legislators' quick action came to an abrupt halt when Senate President John Cullerton used a parliamentary maneuver to keep the measure from going to Gov. Quinn.

At the time, Cullerton's spokeswoman, Rikeesha Phelon said it was on hold, as Cullerton consulted with Quinn.

A month later, it's still on hold -- even as Quinn's term comes to an end.

Look for it to stay that way, until Bruce Rauner becomes governor. Phelon doesn't say that outright, but, "if we were to send the bill to Gov. Quinn and he were to take action to veto it, then the legislature would have little remedy to address that via override."

Quinn previously vetoed measures that were seen as wins for big utilities, including the original plan that paved the way for rate hikes.