General Assembly passes bill to promote renewable energy projects for universities

By Kevin Schwaller

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. -– The Illinois House of Representatives and Senate have voted to pass a bill to allow public universities and state agencies to enter into renewable energy contracts for up to 25 years.

The House on Tuesday passed a bill by a 108-8 vote to allow public universities and state agencies to enter into renewable energy contracts for up to 25 years. Senate Bill 211 is sponsored by Senator Scott Bennett (D–Champaign) and Representative Katie Stuart (D–Edwardsville). The bill now goes to Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s desk for his signature.

If Pritzker signs the bill, universities and state agencies will be able to enter into cost effective renewable energy resource contracts. The previous contract length limitation was shorter, making it economically infeasible for universities to enter into solar power purchase agreements.

Installing onsite renewable energy with a 25-year contract will reduce overall electric bills for state universities and agencies while increasing renewable development in the state.

“Illinois is at a clean energy crossroads,” State Sen. Scott Bennett (D-Champaign) said. “As a state, we have the potential to continue to grow our clean energy footprint. Senate Bill 211 will make it easier for Illinois to continue that upward trajectory of providing clean, reliable and affordable energy to all of our communities.”

Read the entire piece at Central Illinois Proud.

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