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Electrical Aggregation Forum Talks Power

The village held a special forum Tuesday night to discuss a referendum they hope could cut residents' electricity bills.

Mokena residents gathered Tuesday night at the park district headquarters to learn about a referendum the village hopes could cut residents' electricity bills.

The residents met to hear about electrical aggregation, which a recent state law allows villages and counties to use to shop around for a better price than ComEd offers.

Read past Mokena Patch stories about electrical aggregation.

This would only affect the power-supply portion of the electrical bill, Assistant Village Administrator Kirk Zoellner said. That's about 60 percent of the total bill for most residents and businesses, he said.

Whoever provides the power, it would still come through the ComEd infrastructure and the bill would still come from ComEd.

"They really don't care who the electrical supplier is because they don't want to be in that business," Public Works Director Lou Tiberi said.

Resident Ray Baranak said he was concerned about the village looking for a better rate when people can do that themselves. He used the Citizens Utility Board to find a better rate, although the village also recommends Plug In Illinois.

He found a rate of 5.99 cents per kilowatt hour, down from ComEd's 7.33 cents.

"It took me probably 20 minutes," Baranak said.

If voters approve the measure in the March 20 election, the village would shop around for a cheaper price, which Zoellner said could come by late summer or early fall.

If ComEd still offers the cheapest price, nothing would change. If the village finds a cheaper price, they would go to that for residents and business owners who don't opt out.

Residents and business owners can always choose their own electricity supplier if they don't like the village's choice. They can even go back to ComEd.

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