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Public Act 102-0176


 

Public Act 0176 102ND GENERAL ASSEMBLY

  
  
  

 


 
Public Act 102-0176
 
SB0265 EnrolledLRB102 15310 KTG 20666 b

    AN ACT concerning public aid.
 
    Be it enacted by the People of the State of Illinois,
represented in the General Assembly:
 
    Section 5. The Energy Assistance Act is amended by
changing Sections 6, 13, and 18 and by adding Section 20 as
follows:
 
    (305 ILCS 20/6)  (from Ch. 111 2/3, par. 1406)
    Sec. 6. Eligibility, Conditions of Participation, and
Energy Assistance.
    (a) Any person who is a resident of the State of Illinois
and whose household income is not greater than an amount
determined annually by the Department, in consultation with
the Policy Advisory Council, may apply for assistance pursuant
to this Act in accordance with regulations promulgated by the
Department. In setting the annual eligibility level, the
Department shall consider the amount of available funding and
may not set a limit higher than 150% of the federal nonfarm
poverty level as established by the federal Office of
Management and Budget or 60% of the State median income for the
current State fiscal year as established by the U.S.
Department of Health and Human Services; except that for the
period from the effective date of this amendatory Act of the
101st General Assembly through June 30, 2021, the Department
may establish limits not higher than 200% of that poverty
level. The Department, in consultation with the Policy
Advisory Council, may adjust the percentage of poverty level
annually in accordance with federal guidelines and based on
funding availability.
    (b) Applicants who qualify for assistance pursuant to
subsection (a) of this Section shall, subject to appropriation
from the General Assembly and subject to availability of funds
to the Department, receive energy assistance as provided by
this Act. The Department, upon receipt of monies authorized
pursuant to this Act for energy assistance, shall commit funds
for each qualified applicant in an amount determined by the
Department. In determining the amounts of assistance to be
provided to or on behalf of a qualified applicant, the
Department shall ensure that the highest amounts of assistance
go to households with the greatest energy costs in relation to
household income. The Department shall include factors such as
energy costs, household size, household income, and region of
the State when determining individual household benefits. In
setting assistance levels, the Department shall attempt to
provide assistance to approximately the same number of
households who participated in the 1991 Residential Energy
Assistance Partnership Program. Such assistance levels shall
be adjusted annually on the basis of funding availability and
energy costs. In promulgating rules for the administration of
this Section the Department shall assure that a minimum of 1/3
of funds available for benefits to eligible households with
the lowest incomes and that elderly households, households
with children under the age of 6 years old, and households with
persons with disabilities are offered a priority application
period.
    (c) If the applicant is not a customer of record of an
energy provider for energy services or an applicant for such
service, such applicant shall receive a direct energy
assistance payment in an amount established by the Department
for all such applicants under this Act; provided, however,
that such an applicant must have rental expenses for housing
greater than 30% of household income.
    (c-1) This subsection shall apply only in cases where: (1)
the applicant is not a customer of record of an energy provider
because energy services are provided by the owner of the unit
as a portion of the rent; (2) the applicant resides in housing
subsidized or developed with funds provided under the Rental
Housing Support Program Act or under a similar locally funded
rent subsidy program, or is the voucher holder who resides in a
rental unit within the State of Illinois and whose monthly
rent is subsidized by the tenant-based Housing Choice Voucher
Program under Section 8 of the U.S. Housing Act of 1937; and
(3) the rental expenses for housing are no more than 30% of
household income. In such cases, the household may apply for
an energy assistance payment under this Act and the owner of
the housing unit shall cooperate with the applicant by
providing documentation of the energy costs for that unit. Any
compensation paid to the energy provider who supplied energy
services to the household shall be paid on behalf of the owner
of the housing unit providing energy services to the
household. The Department shall report annually to the General
Assembly on the number of households receiving energy
assistance under this subsection and the cost of such
assistance. The provisions of this subsection (c-1), other
than this sentence, are inoperative after August 31, 2012.
    (d) If the applicant is a customer of an energy provider,
such applicant shall receive energy assistance in an amount
established by the Department for all such applicants under
this Act, such amount to be paid by the Department to the
energy provider supplying winter energy service to such
applicant. Such applicant shall:
        (i) make all reasonable efforts to apply to any other
    appropriate source of public energy assistance; and
        (ii) sign a waiver permitting the Department to
    receive income information from any public or private
    agency providing income or energy assistance and from any
    employer, whether public or private.
    (e) Any qualified applicant pursuant to this Section may
receive or have paid on such applicant's behalf an emergency
assistance payment to enable such applicant to obtain access
to winter energy services. Any such payments shall be made in
accordance with regulations of the Department.
    (f) The Department may, if sufficient funds are available,
provide additional benefits to certain qualified applicants:
        (i) for the reduction of past due amounts owed to
    energy providers; and
        (ii) to assist the household in responding to
    excessively high summer temperatures or energy costs.
    Households containing elderly members, children, a person
    with a disability, or a person with a medical need for
    conditioned air shall receive priority for receipt of such
    benefits.
(Source: P.A. 101-636, eff. 6-10-20.)
 
    (305 ILCS 20/13)
    (Section scheduled to be repealed on January 1, 2025)
    Sec. 13. Supplemental Low-Income Energy Assistance Fund.
    (a) The Supplemental Low-Income Energy Assistance Fund is
hereby created as a special fund in the State Treasury. The
Supplemental Low-Income Energy Assistance Fund is authorized
to receive moneys from voluntary donations from individuals,
foundations, corporations, and other sources, moneys received
pursuant to Section 17, and, by statutory deposit, the moneys
collected pursuant to this Section. The Fund is also
authorized to receive voluntary donations from individuals,
foundations, corporations, and other sources. Subject to
appropriation, the Department shall use moneys from the
Supplemental Low-Income Energy Assistance Fund for payments to
electric or gas public utilities, municipal electric or gas
utilities, and electric cooperatives on behalf of their
customers who are participants in the program authorized by
Sections 4 and 18 of this Act, for the provision of
weatherization services and for administration of the
Supplemental Low-Income Energy Assistance Fund. All other
deposits outside of the Energy Assistance Charge as set forth
in subsection (b) are not subject to the percentage
restrictions related to administrative and weatherization
expenses provided in this subsection. The yearly expenditures
for weatherization may not exceed 10% of the amount collected
during the year pursuant to this Section, except when unspent
funds from the Supplemental Low-Income Energy Assistance Fund
are reallocated from a previous year; any unspent balance of
the 10% weatherization allowance may be utilized for
weatherization expenses in the year they are reallocated. The
yearly administrative expenses of the Supplemental Low-Income
Energy Assistance Fund may not exceed 13% 10% of the amount
collected during that year pursuant to this Section, except
when unspent funds from the Supplemental Low-Income Energy
Assistance Fund are reallocated from a previous year; any
unspent balance of the 13% 10% administrative allowance may be
utilized for administrative expenses in the year they are
reallocated. Of the 13% administrative allowance, no less than
8% shall be provided to Local Administrative Agencies for
administrative expenses.
    (b) Notwithstanding the provisions of Section 16-111 of
the Public Utilities Act but subject to subsection (k) of this
Section, each public utility, electric cooperative, as defined
in Section 3.4 of the Electric Supplier Act, and municipal
utility, as referenced in Section 3-105 of the Public
Utilities Act, that is engaged in the delivery of electricity
or the distribution of natural gas within the State of
Illinois shall, effective January 1, 2022 effective January 1,
1998, assess each of its customer accounts a monthly Energy
Assistance Charge for the Supplemental Low-Income Energy
Assistance Fund. The delivering public utility, municipal
electric or gas utility, or electric or gas cooperative for a
self-assessing purchaser remains subject to the collection of
the fee imposed by this Section. The monthly charge shall be as
follows:
        (1) Base Energy Assistance Charge per month on each
    account for residential electrical service;
        (2) Base Energy Assistance Charge per month on each
    account for residential gas service;
        (3) Ten times the Base Energy Assistance Charge per
    month on each account for non-residential electric service
    which had less than 10 megawatts of peak demand during the
    previous calendar year;
        (4) Ten times the Base Energy Assistance Charge per
    month on each account for non-residential gas service
    which had distributed to it less than 4,000,000 therms of
    gas during the previous calendar year;
        (5) Three hundred and seventy-five times the Base
    Energy Assistance Charge per month on each account for
    non-residential electric service which had 10 megawatts or
    greater of peak demand during the previous calendar year;
    and
        (6) Three hundred and seventy-five times the Base
    Energy Assistance Charge per month on each account for
    non-residential gas service which had 4,000,000 or more
    therms of gas distributed to it during the previous
    calendar year.
    The Base Energy Assistance Charge shall be $0.48 per month
for the calendar year beginning January 1, 2022 and shall
increase by $0.16 per month for any calendar year, provided no
less than 80% of the previous State fiscal year's available
Supplemental Low-Income Energy Assistance Fund funding was
exhausted. The maximum Base Energy Assistance Charge shall not
exceed $0.96 per month for any calendar year.
        (1) $0.48 per month on each account for residential
    electric service;
        (2) $0.48 per month on each account for residential
    gas service;
        (3) $4.80 per month on each account for
    non-residential electric service which had less than 10
    megawatts of peak demand during the previous calendar
    year;
        (4) $4.80 per month on each account for
    non-residential gas service which had distributed to it
    less than 4,000,000 therms of gas during the previous
    calendar year;
        (5) $360 per month on each account for non-residential
    electric service which had 10 megawatts or greater of peak
    demand during the previous calendar year; and
        (6) $360 per month on each account for non-residential
    gas service which had 4,000,000 or more therms of gas
    distributed to it during the previous calendar year.
    The incremental change to such charges imposed by Public
Act 99-933 and this amendatory Act of the 102nd General
Assembly this amendatory Act of the 96th General Assembly
shall not (i) be used for any purpose other than to directly
assist customers and (ii) be applicable to utilities serving
less than 25,000 100,000 customers in Illinois on January 1,
2021 2009. The incremental change to such charges imposed by
this amendatory Act of the 102nd General Assembly are intended
to increase utilization of the Percentage of Income Payment
Plan (PIPP or PIP Plan) and shall be applied such that PIP Plan
enrollment is at least doubled, as compared to 2020
enrollment, by 2024.
    In addition, electric and gas utilities have committed,
and shall contribute, a one-time payment of $22 million to the
Fund, within 10 days after the effective date of the tariffs
established pursuant to Sections 16-111.8 and 19-145 of the
Public Utilities Act to be used for the Department's cost of
implementing the programs described in Section 18 of this
amendatory Act of the 96th General Assembly, the Arrearage
Reduction Program described in Section 18, and the programs
described in Section 8-105 of the Public Utilities Act. If a
utility elects not to file a rider within 90 days after the
effective date of this amendatory Act of the 96th General
Assembly, then the contribution from such utility shall be
made no later than February 1, 2010.
    (c) For purposes of this Section:
        (1) "residential electric service" means electric
    utility service for household purposes delivered to a
    dwelling of 2 or fewer units which is billed under a
    residential rate, or electric utility service for
    household purposes delivered to a dwelling unit or units
    which is billed under a residential rate and is registered
    by a separate meter for each dwelling unit;
        (2) "residential gas service" means gas utility
    service for household purposes distributed to a dwelling
    of 2 or fewer units which is billed under a residential
    rate, or gas utility service for household purposes
    distributed to a dwelling unit or units which is billed
    under a residential rate and is registered by a separate
    meter for each dwelling unit;
        (3) "non-residential electric service" means electric
    utility service which is not residential electric service;
    and
        (4) "non-residential gas service" means gas utility
    service which is not residential gas service.
    (d) Within 30 days after the effective date of this
amendatory Act of the 96th General Assembly, each public
utility engaged in the delivery of electricity or the
distribution of natural gas shall file with the Illinois
Commerce Commission tariffs incorporating the Energy
Assistance Charge in other charges stated in such tariffs,
which shall become effective no later than the beginning of
the first billing cycle following such filing.
    (e) The Energy Assistance Charge assessed by electric and
gas public utilities shall be considered a charge for public
utility service.
    (f) By the 20th day of the month following the month in
which the charges imposed by the Section were collected, each
public utility, municipal utility, and electric cooperative
shall remit to the Department of Revenue all moneys received
as payment of the Energy Assistance Charge on a return
prescribed and furnished by the Department of Revenue showing
such information as the Department of Revenue may reasonably
require; provided, however, that a utility offering an
Arrearage Reduction Program or Supplemental Arrearage
Reduction Program pursuant to Section 18 of this Act shall be
entitled to net those amounts necessary to fund and recover
the costs of such Programs as authorized by that Section that
is no more than the incremental change in such Energy
Assistance Charge authorized by Public Act 96-33. If a
customer makes a partial payment, a public utility, municipal
utility, or electric cooperative may elect either: (i) to
apply such partial payments first to amounts owed to the
utility or cooperative for its services and then to payment
for the Energy Assistance Charge or (ii) to apply such partial
payments on a pro-rata basis between amounts owed to the
utility or cooperative for its services and to payment for the
Energy Assistance Charge.
    If any payment provided for in this Section exceeds the
distributor's liabilities under this Act, as shown on an
original return, the Department may authorize the distributor
to credit such excess payment against liability subsequently
to be remitted to the Department under this Act, in accordance
with reasonable rules adopted by the Department. If the
Department subsequently determines that all or any part of the
credit taken was not actually due to the distributor, the
distributor's discount shall be reduced by an amount equal to
the difference between the discount as applied to the credit
taken and that actually due, and that distributor shall be
liable for penalties and interest on such difference.
    (g) The Department of Revenue shall deposit into the
Supplemental Low-Income Energy Assistance Fund all moneys
remitted to it in accordance with subsection (f) of this
Section. ; provided, however, that the amounts remitted by
each utility shall be used to provide assistance to that
utility's customers. The utilities shall coordinate with the
Department to establish an equitable and practical methodology
for implementing this subsection (g) beginning with the 2010
program year.
    (h) On or before December 31, 2002, the Department shall
prepare a report for the General Assembly on the expenditure
of funds appropriated from the Low-Income Energy Assistance
Block Grant Fund for the program authorized under Section 4 of
this Act.
    (i) The Department of Revenue may establish such rules as
it deems necessary to implement this Section.
    (j) The Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity
may establish such rules as it deems necessary to implement
this Section.
    (k) The charges imposed by this Section shall only apply
to customers of municipal electric or gas utilities and
electric or gas cooperatives if the municipal electric or gas
utility or electric or gas cooperative makes an affirmative
decision to impose the charge. If a municipal electric or gas
utility or an electric cooperative makes an affirmative
decision to impose the charge provided by this Section, the
municipal electric or gas utility or electric cooperative
shall inform the Department of Revenue in writing of such
decision when it begins to impose the charge. If a municipal
electric or gas utility or electric or gas cooperative does
not assess this charge, the Department may not use funds from
the Supplemental Low-Income Energy Assistance Fund to provide
benefits to its customers under the program authorized by
Section 4 of this Act.
    In its use of federal funds under this Act, the Department
may not cause a disproportionate share of those federal funds
to benefit customers of systems which do not assess the charge
provided by this Section.
    This Section is repealed on January 1, 2025 unless renewed
by action of the General Assembly.
(Source: P.A. 99-457, eff. 1-1-16; 99-906, eff. 6-1-17;
99-933, eff. 1-27-17; 100-863, eff. 8-14-18; 100-1171, eff.
1-4-19.)
 
    (305 ILCS 20/18)
    Sec. 18. Financial assistance; payment plans.
    (a) The Percentage of Income Payment Plan (PIPP or PIP
Plan) is hereby created as a mandatory bill payment assistance
program for low-income residential customers of utilities
serving more than 100,000 retail customers as of January 1,
2021 2009. The PIP Plan will:
        (1) bring participants' gas and electric bills into
    the range of affordability;
        (2) provide incentives for participants to make timely
    payments;
        (3) encourage participants to reduce usage and
    participate in conservation and energy efficiency measures
    that reduce the customer's bill and payment requirements;
    and
        (4) identify participants whose homes are most in need
    of weatherization; and .
        (5) endeavor to maximize participation and spend at
    least 80% of the funding available for the year.
    (b) For purposes of this Section:
        (1) "LIHEAP" means the energy assistance program
    established under the Illinois Energy Assistance Act and
    the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Act of 1981.
        (2) "Plan participant" is an eligible participant who
    is also eligible for the PIPP and who will receive either a
    percentage of income payment credit under the PIPP
    criteria set forth in this Act or a benefit pursuant to
    Section 4 of this Act. Plan participants are a subset of
    eligible participants.
        (3) "Pre-program arrears" means the amount a plan
    participant owes for gas or electric service at the time
    the participant is determined to be eligible for the PIPP
    or the program set forth in Section 4 of this Act.
        (4) "Eligible participant" means any person who has
    applied for, been accepted and is receiving residential
    service from a gas or electric utility and who is also
    eligible for LIHEAP or otherwise satisfies the eligibility
    criteria set forth in paragraph (1) of subsection (c).
    (c) The PIP Plan shall be administered as follows:
        (1) The Department shall coordinate with Local
    Administrative Agencies (LAAs), to determine eligibility
    for the Illinois Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program
    (LIHEAP) pursuant to the Energy Assistance Act, provided
    that eligible income shall be no more than 150% of the
    poverty level or 60% of the State median income, except
    that for the period from the effective date of this
    amendatory Act of the 101st General Assembly through June
    30, 2021, eligible income shall be no more than 200% of the
    poverty level. Applicants will be screened to determine
    whether the applicant's projected payments for electric
    service or natural gas service over a 12-month period
    exceed the criteria established in this Section. The
    Department, in consultation with the Policy Advisory
    Council, may adjust the percentage of poverty level
    annually to determine income eligibility. To maintain the
    financial integrity of the program, the Department may
    limit eligibility to households with income below 125% of
    the poverty level.
        (2) The Department shall establish the percentage of
    income formula to determine the amount of a monthly credit
    for participants with eligible income based on poverty
    level. , not to exceed $150 per month per household, not to
    exceed $1,800 annually; however, for the period from the
    effective date of this amendatory Act of the 101st General
    Assembly through June 30, 2021, the monthly credit for
    participants with eligible income over 100% of the poverty
    level may be as much as $200 per month per household, not
    to exceed $2,400 annually, and, the monthly credit for
    participants with eligible income 100% or less of the
    poverty level may be as much as $250 per month per
    household, not to exceed $3,000 annually. Credits will be
    applied to PIP Plan participants' utility bills based on
    the portion of the bill that is the responsibility of the
    participant provided that the percentage shall be no more
    than a total of 6% of the relevant income for gas and
    electric utility bills combined, but in any event no less
    than $10 per month, unless the household does not pay
    directly for heat, in which case its payment shall be 2.4%
    of income but in any event no less than $5 per month. The
    Department, in consultation with the Policy Advisory
    Council, may adjust such monthly credit amounts annually
    and may establish a minimum credit amount based on the
    cost of administering the program and may deny credits to
    otherwise eligible participants if the cost of
    administering the credit exceeds the actual amount of any
    monthly credit to a participant. If the participant takes
    both gas and electric service, 50% 66.67% of the credit
    shall be allocated to the entity that provides the
    participant's primary energy supply for heating. Each
    participant shall enter into a levelized payment plan for,
    as applicable, gas and electric service and such plans
    shall be implemented by the utility so that a
    participant's usage and required payments are reviewed and
    adjusted regularly, but no more frequently than quarterly.
    Nothing in this Section is intended to prohibit a
    customer, who is otherwise eligible for LIHEAP, from
    participating in the program described in Section 4 of
    this Act. Eligible participants who receive such a benefit
    shall be considered plan participants and shall be
    eligible to participate in the Arrearage Reduction Program
    described in item (5) of this subsection (c).
        (3) The Department shall remit, through the LAAs, to
    the utility or participating alternative supplier that
    portion of the plan participant's bill that is not the
    responsibility of the participant. In the event that the
    Department fails to timely remit payment to the utility,
    the utility shall be entitled to recover all costs related
    to such nonpayment through the automatic adjustment clause
    tariffs established pursuant to Section 16-111.8 and
    Section 19-145 of the Public Utilities Act. For purposes
    of this item (3) of this subsection (c), payment is due on
    the date specified on the participant's bill. The
    Department, the Department of Revenue and LAAs shall adopt
    processes that provide for the timely payment required by
    this item (3) of this subsection (c).
        (4) A plan participant is responsible for all actual
    charges for utility service in excess of the PIPP credit.
    Pre-program arrears that are included in the Arrearage
    Reduction Program described in item (5) of this subsection
    (c) shall not be included in the calculation of the
    levelized payment plan. Emergency or crisis assistance
    payments shall not affect the amount of any PIPP credit to
    which a participant is entitled.
        (5) Electric and gas utilities subject to this Section
    shall implement an Arrearage Reduction Program (ARP) for
    plan participants as follows: for each month that a plan
    participant timely pays his or her utility bill, the
    utility shall apply a credit to a portion of the
    participant's pre-program arrears, if any, equal to
    one-twelfth of such arrearage provided that the total
    amount of arrearage credits shall equal no more than
    $1,000 annually for each participant for gas and no more
    than $1,000 annually for each participant for electricity.
    In the third year of the PIPP, the Department, in
    consultation with the Policy Advisory Council established
    pursuant to Section 5 of this Act, shall determine by rule
    an appropriate per participant total cap on such amounts,
    if any. Those plan participants participating in the ARP
    shall not be subject to the imposition of any additional
    late payment fees on pre-program arrears covered by the
    ARP. In all other respects, the utility shall bill and
    collect the monthly bill of a plan participant pursuant to
    the same rules, regulations, programs and policies as
    applicable to residential customers generally.
    Participation in the Arrearage Reduction Program shall be
    limited to the maximum amount of funds available as set
    forth in subsection (f) of Section 13 of this Act. In the
    event any donated funds under Section 13 of this Act are
    specifically designated for the purpose of funding the
    ARP, the Department shall remit such amounts to the
    utilities upon verification that such funds are needed to
    fund the ARP. Nothing in this Section shall preclude a
    utility from continuing to implement, and apply credits
    under, an ARP in the event that the PIPP or LIHEAP is
    suspended due to lack of funding such that the plan
    participant does not receive a benefit under either the
    PIPP or LIHEAP.
        (5.5) In addition to the ARP described in paragraph
    (5) of this subsection (c), utilities may also implement a
    Supplemental Arrearage Reduction Program (SARP) for
    eligible participants who are not able to become plan
    participants due to PIPP timing or funding constraints. If
    a utility elects to implement a SARP, it shall be
    administered as follows: for each month that a SARP
    participant timely pays his or her utility bill, the
    utility shall apply a credit to a portion of the
    participant's pre-program arrears, if any, equal to
    one-twelfth of such arrearage, provided that the utility
    may limit the total amount of arrearage credits to no more
    than $1,000 annually for each participant for gas and no
    more than $1,000 annually for each participant for
    electricity. SARP participants shall not be subject to the
    imposition of any additional late payment fees on
    pre-program arrears covered by the SARP. In all other
    respects, the utility shall bill and collect the monthly
    bill of a SARP participant under the same rules,
    regulations, programs, and policies as applicable to
    residential customers generally. Participation in the SARP
    shall be limited to the maximum amount of funds available
    as set forth in subsection (f) of Section 13 of this Act.
    In the event any donated funds under Section 13 of this Act
    are specifically designated for the purpose of funding the
    SARP, the Department shall remit such amounts to the
    utilities upon verification that such funds are needed to
    fund the SARP.
        (6) The Department may terminate a plan participant's
    eligibility for the PIP Plan upon notification by the
    utility that the participant's monthly utility payment is
    more than 75 45 days past due. One-twelfth of a customer's
    arrearage shall be deducted from the total arrearage owed
    for each on-time payment made by the customer.
        (7) The Department, in consultation with the Policy
    Advisory Council, may adjust the number of PIP Plan
    participants annually, if necessary, to match the
    availability of funds. Any plan participant who qualifies
    for a PIPP credit under a utility's PIPP shall be entitled
    to participate in and receive a credit under such
    utility's ARP for so long as such utility has ARP funds
    available, regardless of whether the customer's
    participation under another utility's PIPP or ARP has been
    curtailed or limited because of a lack of funds.
        (8) The Department shall fully implement the PIPP at
    the earliest possible date it is able to effectively
    administer the PIPP. Within 90 days of the effective date
    of this amendatory Act of the 96th General Assembly, the
    Department shall, in consultation with utility companies,
    participating alternative suppliers, LAAs and the Illinois
    Commerce Commission (Commission), issue a detailed
    implementation plan which shall include detailed testing
    protocols and analysis of the capacity for implementation
    by the LAAs and utilities. Such consultation process also
    shall address how to implement the PIPP in the most
    cost-effective and timely manner, and shall identify
    opportunities for relying on the expertise of utilities,
    LAAs and the Commission. Following the implementation of
    the testing protocols, the Department shall issue a
    written report on the feasibility of full or gradual
    implementation. The PIPP shall be fully implemented by
    September 1, 2011, but may be phased in prior to that date.
        (9) As part of the screening process established under
    item (1) of this subsection (c), the Department and LAAs
    shall assess whether any energy efficiency or demand
    response measures are available to the plan participant at
    no cost, and if so, the participant shall enroll in any
    such program for which he or she is eligible. The LAAs
    shall assist the participant in the applicable enrollment
    or application process.
        (10) Each alternative retail electric and gas supplier
    serving residential customers shall elect whether to
    participate in the PIPP or ARP described in this Section.
    Any such supplier electing to participate in the PIPP
    shall provide to the Department such information as the
    Department may require, including, without limitation,
    information sufficient for the Department to determine the
    proportionate allocation of credits between the
    alternative supplier and the utility. If a utility in
    whose service territory an alternative supplier serves
    customers contributes money to the ARP fund which is not
    recovered from ratepayers, then an alternative supplier
    which participates in ARP in that utility's service
    territory shall also contribute to the ARP fund in an
    amount that is commensurate with the number of alternative
    supplier customers who elect to participate in the
    program.
        (11) The PIPP shall be designed and implemented each
    year to maximize participation and spend at least 80% of
    the funding available for the year.
    (d) The Department, in consultation with the Policy
Advisory Council, shall develop and implement a program to
educate customers about the PIP Plan and about their rights
and responsibilities under the percentage of income component.
The Department, in consultation with the Policy Advisory
Council, shall establish a process that LAAs shall use to
contact customers in jeopardy of losing eligibility due to
late payments. The Department shall ensure that LAAs are
adequately funded to perform all necessary educational tasks.
    (e) The PIPP shall be administered in a manner which
ensures that credits to plan participants will not be counted
as income or as a resource in other means-tested assistance
programs for low-income households or otherwise result in the
loss of federal or State assistance dollars for low-income
households.
    (f) In order to ensure that implementation costs are
minimized, the Department and utilities shall work together to
identify cost-effective ways to transfer information
electronically and to employ available protocols that will
minimize their respective administrative costs as follows:
        (1) The Commission may require utilities to provide
    such information on customer usage and billing and payment
    information as required by the Department to implement the
    PIP Plan and to provide written notices and communications
    to plan participants.
        (2) Each utility and participating alternative
    supplier shall file annual reports with the Department and
    the Commission that cumulatively summarize and update
    program information as required by the Commission's rules.
    The reports shall track implementation costs and contain
    such information as is necessary to evaluate the success
    of the PIPP.
        (2.5) The Department shall annually prepare and submit
    a report to the General Assembly, the Commission, and the
    Policy Advisory Council that identifies the following
    amounts for the most recently completed year: total monies
    collected under subsection (b) of Section 13 of this Act
    for all PIPPs implemented in the State; monies allocated
    to each utility for implementation of its PIPP; and monies
    allocated to each utility for other purposes, including a
    description of each of those purposes. The Commission
    shall publish the report on its website.
        (3) The Department and the Commission shall have the
    authority to promulgate rules and regulations necessary to
    execute and administer the provisions of this Section.
    (g) Each utility shall be entitled to recover reasonable
administrative and operational costs incurred to comply with
this Section from the Supplemental Low Income Energy
Assistance Fund. The utility may net such costs against monies
it would otherwise remit to the Funds, and each utility shall
include in the annual report required under subsection (f) of
this Section an accounting for the funds collected.
(Source: P.A. 101-636, eff. 6-10-20.)
 
    (305 ILCS 20/20 new)
    Sec. 20. Expanded eligibility. All programs pursuant to
this Act shall be available to eligible low-income Illinois
residents who qualify for assistance under Sections 6 and 18,
regardless of immigration status, using the Supplemental
Low-Income Energy Assistance Fund for customers of utilities
and vendors that collect the Energy Assistance Charge and pay
into the Supplemental Low-Income Energy Assistance Fund.

Effective Date: 6/1/2022