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Government

Kane County Board to act on referendum proposal

GENEVA – Voters in unincorporated Kane County likely will get a second chance to decide whether the county government should have the authority to negotiate with electricity providers on their behalf.

Wednesday, the County Board’s Executive Committee endorsed a referendum question for the March 18 primary election ballot asking voters whether the county should pursue an electric aggregation program, which could lead to lower power bills.

If approved, the county would go out to bid for a provider.

“We are just asking for permission to enter into that process,” said County Board member Kurt Kojzarek, R-Gilberts, chairman of the Energy and Environment Committee.

County voters narrowly defeated a similar referendum in March 2012. However, voters in several municipalities – including Campton Hills, Elburn, Sugar Grove and North Aurora – have approved such measures.

“This was presented several years ago, and it was a fairly new concept, so it’s nice to see it presented again,” said County Board member Barbara Wojnicki, R-Campton Hills.

Kojzarek described it as a win-win situation.

“If people decide to vote against it, and it passes anyway, they still have the option to opt out,” he said.

Kane County’s electric aggregation program would cover residents and small commercial retail customers in unincorporated Kane County except for unincorporated Aurora and Dundee townships – communities that already have enacted aggregation proposals.

The full County Board is expected to vote on the matter Tuesday.

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