(220 ILCS 5/16-108.10)
Energy low-income and support program.
Beginning in 2017, without obtaining any approvals from the Commission or any other agency, regardless of whether any such approval would otherwise be required, a participating utility that is not a combination utility, as defined by Section 16-108.5 of this Act, shall contribute $10,000,000 per year for 5 years to the energy low-income and support program, which is intended to fund customer assistance programs with the primary purpose being avoidance of imminent disconnection and reconnecting customers who have been disconnected for non-payment. Such programs may include:
(1) a residential hardship program that may partner
with community-based organizations, including senior citizen organizations, and provides grants to low-income residential customers, including low-income senior citizens, who demonstrate a hardship;
(2) a program that provides grants and other bill
payment concessions to disabled veterans who demonstrate a hardship and members of the armed services or reserve forces of the United States or members of the Illinois National Guard who are on active duty under an executive order of the President of the United States, an act of the Congress of the United States, or an order of the Governor and who demonstrate a hardship;
(3) a budget assistance program that provides tools
and education to low-income senior citizens to assist them with obtaining information regarding energy usage and effective means of managing energy costs;
(4) a non-residential special hardship program that
provides grants to non-residential customers, such as small businesses and non-profit organizations, that demonstrate a hardship, including those providing services to senior citizen and low-income customers; and
(5) a performance-based assistance program that
provides grants to encourage residential customers to make on-time payments by matching a portion of the customer's payments or providing credits towards arrearages.
The payments made by a participating utility under this Section shall not be a recoverable expense. A participating utility may elect to fund either new or existing customer assistance programs, including, but not limited to, those that are administered by the utility.
Programs that use funds that are provided by an electric utility to reduce utility bills may be implemented through tariffs that are filed with and reviewed by the Commission. If a utility elects to file tariffs with the Commission to implement all or a portion of the programs, those tariffs shall, regardless of the date actually filed, be deemed accepted and approved and shall become effective on the first business day after they are filed. The electric utilities whose customers benefit from the funds that are disbursed as contemplated in this Section shall file annual reports documenting the disbursement of those funds with the Commission. The Commission may audit disbursement of the funds to ensure they were disbursed consistently with this Section.
If the Commission finds that a participating utility is no longer eligible to update the performance-based formula rate tariff under subsection (d) of Section 16-108.5 of this Act or the performance-based formula rate is otherwise terminated, then the participating utility's obligations under this Section shall immediately terminate.
(Source: P.A. 99-906, eff. 6-1-17