CCP releases competition principles

Issue 2 and Volume 101.

CCP releases competition principles

Fair and equitable treatment of all consumers is the thrust of a series of pro-consumer legislative principles for competition in the electricity industry released by the Consumer Choice Partnership (CCP). CCP, coordinated by Central Illinois Light Co. (CILCO), includes a spectrum of businesses, organizations, agencies and individuals who support bringing the benefits of competition to all consumers sooner rather than later.

Bob Viets, CILCO chairman and CEO, said, “The time has come to allow consumer choice in the electricity industry. All consumers should be entitled to choose their electricity suppliers, as they do in buying other goods and services. The market, rather than a monopolistic franchise system, should be allowed to define prices and services. Competition will increase efficiency, bring about lower prices and improve consumer satisfaction.”

Efforts to give consumers a choice of electricity suppliers have increased in the last year in Illinois and throughout the country. Four states–Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, New Hampshire and California–already have adopted legislation to provide some form of consumer choice in buying electricity.

Under consumer choice proposals, marketing companies will sell electricity to the consumer, and the local utility will own and maintain lines needed to deliver the electricity. A pilot program created by CILCO in central Illinois has enabled small, medium and large electricity consumers to save 15 to 40 percent of their monthly bills, which were already the lowest in the state.

CCP members include Air Liquide America Corp., Caterpillar Inc., CILCO, CITGO Petroleum Corp., Citizens For A Sound Economy, Enron, Environmental Science & Engineering Inc., Ford Motor Co., Keystone Steel & Wire Co., Louisville Gas & Electric, MidCon Power Services Corp., Mobil Oil Co., National KiloWatt LLC, Pekin Energy Co., Praxair, UtiliCorp United, Wisconsin Electric Power Co. and Wisconsin Power & Light.