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Illinois town to consider individual electricity contracts

Though electricity deregulation in Illinois began several years ago, electricity providers are still expanding their services to the many smaller communities across the state. Now the NewsTribune reports that residents of the small central Illinois town of Spring Valley could soon have the option to compare electricity prices.

Located on the Illinois river halfway between Peoria and Chicago, Spring Valley is too small to have its own public utility, so residents have traditionally gotten their power from the state's primary utility company, Ameren.

Spring Valley Alderman Mike Richetta has suggested the possibility of allowing individual residents the option to switch electricity companies to help the townspeople handle rising electricity rates.

The alderman's proposal is set to be addressed at a town finance committee meeting on Tuesday, November 1, and would then need to receive approval from a town referendum.

The idea of individuals changing electricity suppliers is somewhat less common in Illinois, which favors aggregation, than some areas. However, Plug In Illinois reports that nearly 120,000 Illinois residents had switched to so-called retail electric suppliers as of September, nearly 100 times the number at the beginning of the year.