NW Times of Indiana: Let the bidding begin: Chicagoans approve electricity aggregation to cut bills

CHICAGO | After Tuesday’s referendum, the phrase power broker has a whole new meaning for the city of Chicago.

A majority of Chicago’s voters approved the electricity aggregation referendum on Tuesday’s ballot, entrusting the city to negotiate with energy suppliers and purchase power on behalf of the city’s residents and small businesses.

As of Wednesday morning, with 98 percent of precincts reporting, 476,934 Chicago voters, or 56 percent, had approved the referendum.

In the short term, there is little doubt that aggregation will save approximately 1 million eligible Chicago residences and small businesses money on their power bills. The Citizens Utility Board, a nonprofit watchdog group, recently projected that Chicago residents could see savings of around $100 on their power bills in the first five months of 2013.

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