Illinois General Assembly - Full Text of HB1079
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Full Text of HB1079  103rd General Assembly



State of Illinois
2023 and 2024


Introduced 1/12/2023, by Rep. Mark L. Walker


220 ILCS 5/8-406  from Ch. 111 2/3, par. 8-406

    Amends the Public Utilities Act. Deletes language that provides that no construction shall commence on any new nuclear power plant to be located within the State, and no certificate of public convenience and necessity or other authorization shall be issued therefor by the Illinois Commerce Commission, until the Director of the Environmental Protection Agency finds that the United States Government, through its authorized agency, has identified and approved a demonstrable technology or means for the disposal of high level nuclear waste, or until such construction has been specifically approved by a statute enacted by the General Assembly. Effective immediately.

LRB103 05251 AMQ 50269 b





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1    AN ACT concerning regulation.
2    Be it enacted by the People of the State of Illinois,
3represented in the General Assembly:
4    Section 5. The Public Utilities Act is amended by changing
5Section 8-406 as follows:
6    (220 ILCS 5/8-406)  (from Ch. 111 2/3, par. 8-406)
7    Sec. 8-406. Certificate of public convenience and
9    (a) No public utility not owning any city or village
10franchise nor engaged in performing any public service or in
11furnishing any product or commodity within this State as of
12July 1, 1921 and not possessing a certificate of public
13convenience and necessity from the Illinois Commerce
14Commission, the State Public Utilities Commission, or the
15Public Utilities Commission, at the time Public Act 84-617
16goes into effect (January 1, 1986), shall transact any
17business in this State until it shall have obtained a
18certificate from the Commission that public convenience and
19necessity require the transaction of such business. A
20certificate of public convenience and necessity requiring the
21transaction of public utility business in any area of this
22State shall include authorization to the public utility
23receiving the certificate of public convenience and necessity



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1to construct such plant, equipment, property, or facility as
2is provided for under the terms and conditions of its tariff
3and as is necessary to provide utility service and carry out
4the transaction of public utility business by the public
5utility in the designated area.
6    (b) No public utility shall begin the construction of any
7new plant, equipment, property, or facility which is not in
8substitution of any existing plant, equipment, property, or
9facility, or any extension or alteration thereof or in
10addition thereto, unless and until it shall have obtained from
11the Commission a certificate that public convenience and
12necessity require such construction. Whenever after a hearing
13the Commission determines that any new construction or the
14transaction of any business by a public utility will promote
15the public convenience and is necessary thereto, it shall have
16the power to issue certificates of public convenience and
17necessity. The Commission shall determine that proposed
18construction will promote the public convenience and necessity
19only if the utility demonstrates: (1) that the proposed
20construction is necessary to provide adequate, reliable, and
21efficient service to its customers and is the least-cost means
22of satisfying the service needs of its customers or that the
23proposed construction will promote the development of an
24effectively competitive electricity market that operates
25efficiently, is equitable to all customers, and is the least
26cost means of satisfying those objectives; (2) that the



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1utility is capable of efficiently managing and supervising the
2construction process and has taken sufficient action to ensure
3adequate and efficient construction and supervision thereof;
4and (3) that the utility is capable of financing the proposed
5construction without significant adverse financial
6consequences for the utility or its customers.
7    (b-5) As used in this subsection (b-5):
8    "Qualifying direct current applicant" means an entity that
9seeks to provide direct current bulk transmission service for
10the purpose of transporting electric energy in interstate
12    "Qualifying direct current project" means a high voltage
13direct current electric service line that crosses at least one
14Illinois border, the Illinois portion of which is physically
15located within the region of the Midcontinent Independent
16System Operator, Inc., or its successor organization, and runs
17through the counties of Pike, Scott, Greene, Macoupin,
18Montgomery, Christian, Shelby, Cumberland, and Clark, is
19capable of transmitting electricity at voltages of 345
20kilovolts or above, and may also include associated
21interconnected alternating current interconnection facilities
22in this State that are part of the proposed project and
23reasonably necessary to connect the project with other
24portions of the grid.
25    Notwithstanding any other provision of this Act, a
26qualifying direct current applicant that does not own,



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1control, operate, or manage, within this State, any plant,
2equipment, or property used or to be used for the transmission
3of electricity at the time of its application or of the
4Commission's order may file an application on or before
5December 31, 2023 with the Commission pursuant to this Section
6or Section 8-406.1 for, and the Commission may grant, a
7certificate of public convenience and necessity to construct,
8operate, and maintain a qualifying direct current project. The
9qualifying direct current applicant may also include in the
10application requests for authority under Section 8-503. The
11Commission shall grant the application for a certificate of
12public convenience and necessity and requests for authority
13under Section 8-503 if it finds that the qualifying direct
14current applicant and the proposed qualifying direct current
15project satisfy the requirements of this subsection and
16otherwise satisfy the criteria of this Section or Section
178-406.1 and the criteria of Section 8-503, as applicable to
18the application and to the extent such criteria are not
19superseded by the provisions of this subsection. The
20Commission's order on the application for the certificate of
21public convenience and necessity shall also include the
22Commission's findings and determinations on the request or
23requests for authority pursuant to Section 8-503. Prior to
24filing its application under either this Section or Section
258-406.1, the qualifying direct current applicant shall conduct
263 public meetings in accordance with subsection (h) of this



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1Section. If the qualifying direct current applicant
2demonstrates in its application that the proposed qualifying
3direct current project is designed to deliver electricity to a
4point or points on the electric transmission grid in either or
5both the PJM Interconnection, LLC or the Midcontinent
6Independent System Operator, Inc., or their respective
7successor organizations, the proposed qualifying direct
8current project shall be deemed to be, and the Commission
9shall find it to be, for public use. If the qualifying direct
10current applicant further demonstrates in its application that
11the proposed transmission project has a capacity of 1,000
12megawatts or larger and a voltage level of 345 kilovolts or
13greater, the proposed transmission project shall be deemed to
14satisfy, and the Commission shall find that it satisfies, the
15criteria stated in item (1) of subsection (b) of this Section
16or in paragraph (1) of subsection (f) of Section 8-406.1, as
17applicable to the application, without the taking of
18additional evidence on these criteria. Prior to the transfer
19of functional control of any transmission assets to a regional
20transmission organization, a qualifying direct current
21applicant shall request Commission approval to join a regional
22transmission organization in an application filed pursuant to
23this subsection (b-5) or separately pursuant to Section 7-102
24of this Act. The Commission may grant permission to a
25qualifying direct current applicant to join a regional
26transmission organization if it finds that the membership, and



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1associated transfer of functional control of transmission
2assets, benefits Illinois customers in light of the attendant
3costs and is otherwise in the public interest. Nothing in this
4subsection (b-5) requires a qualifying direct current
5applicant to join a regional transmission organization.
6Nothing in this subsection (b-5) requires the owner or
7operator of a high voltage direct current transmission line
8that is not a qualifying direct current project to obtain a
9certificate of public convenience and necessity to the extent
10it is not otherwise required by this Section 8-406 or any other
11provision of this Act.
12    (c) (Blank). After September 11, 1987 (the effective date
13of Public Act 85-377), no construction shall commence on any
14new nuclear power plant to be located within this State, and no
15certificate of public convenience and necessity or other
16authorization shall be issued therefor by the Commission,
17until the Director of the Illinois Environmental Protection
18Agency finds that the United States Government, through its
19authorized agency, has identified and approved a demonstrable
20technology or means for the disposal of high level nuclear
21waste, or until such construction has been specifically
22approved by a statute enacted by the General Assembly.
23    As used in this Section, "high level nuclear waste" means
24those aqueous wastes resulting from the operation of the first
25cycle of the solvent extraction system or equivalent and the
26concentrated wastes of the subsequent extraction cycles or



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1equivalent in a facility for reprocessing irradiated reactor
2fuel and shall include spent fuel assemblies prior to fuel
4    (d) In making its determination under subsection (b) of
5this Section, the Commission shall attach primary weight to
6the cost or cost savings to the customers of the utility. The
7Commission may consider any or all factors which will or may
8affect such cost or cost savings, including the public
9utility's engineering judgment regarding the materials used
10for construction.
11    (e) The Commission may issue a temporary certificate which
12shall remain in force not to exceed one year in cases of
13emergency, to assure maintenance of adequate service or to
14serve particular customers, without notice or hearing, pending
15the determination of an application for a certificate, and may
16by regulation exempt from the requirements of this Section
17temporary acts or operations for which the issuance of a
18certificate will not be required in the public interest.
19    A public utility shall not be required to obtain but may
20apply for and obtain a certificate of public convenience and
21necessity pursuant to this Section with respect to any matter
22as to which it has received the authorization or order of the
23Commission under the Electric Supplier Act, and any such
24authorization or order granted a public utility by the
25Commission under that Act shall as between public utilities be
26deemed to be, and shall have except as provided in that Act the



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1same force and effect as, a certificate of public convenience
2and necessity issued pursuant to this Section.
3    No electric cooperative shall be made or shall become a
4party to or shall be entitled to be heard or to otherwise
5appear or participate in any proceeding initiated under this
6Section for authorization of power plant construction and as
7to matters as to which a remedy is available under the Electric
8Supplier Act.
9    (f) Such certificates may be altered or modified by the
10Commission, upon its own motion or upon application by the
11person or corporation affected. Unless exercised within a
12period of 2 years from the grant thereof, authority conferred
13by a certificate of convenience and necessity issued by the
14Commission shall be null and void.
15    No certificate of public convenience and necessity shall
16be construed as granting a monopoly or an exclusive privilege,
17immunity or franchise.
18    (g) A public utility that undertakes any of the actions
19described in items (1) through (3) of this subsection (g) or
20that has obtained approval pursuant to Section 8-406.1 of this
21Act shall not be required to comply with the requirements of
22this Section to the extent such requirements otherwise would
23apply. For purposes of this Section and Section 8-406.1 of
24this Act, "high voltage electric service line" means an
25electric line having a design voltage of 100,000 or more. For
26purposes of this subsection (g), a public utility may do any of



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1the following:
2        (1) replace or upgrade any existing high voltage
3    electric service line and related facilities,
4    notwithstanding its length;
5        (2) relocate any existing high voltage electric
6    service line and related facilities, notwithstanding its
7    length, to accommodate construction or expansion of a
8    roadway or other transportation infrastructure; or
9        (3) construct a high voltage electric service line and
10    related facilities that is constructed solely to serve a
11    single customer's premises or to provide a generator
12    interconnection to the public utility's transmission
13    system and that will pass under or over the premises owned
14    by the customer or generator to be served or under or over
15    premises for which the customer or generator has secured
16    the necessary right of way.
17    (h) A public utility seeking to construct a high-voltage
18electric service line and related facilities (Project) must
19show that the utility has held a minimum of 2 pre-filing public
20meetings to receive public comment concerning the Project in
21each county where the Project is to be located, no earlier than
226 months prior to filing an application for a certificate of
23public convenience and necessity from the Commission. Notice
24of the public meeting shall be published in a newspaper of
25general circulation within the affected county once a week for
263 consecutive weeks, beginning no earlier than one month prior



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1to the first public meeting. If the Project traverses 2
2contiguous counties and where in one county the transmission
3line mileage and number of landowners over whose property the
4proposed route traverses is one-fifth or less of the
5transmission line mileage and number of such landowners of the
6other county, then the utility may combine the 2 pre-filing
7meetings in the county with the greater transmission line
8mileage and affected landowners. All other requirements
9regarding pre-filing meetings shall apply in both counties.
10Notice of the public meeting, including a description of the
11Project, must be provided in writing to the clerk of each
12county where the Project is to be located. A representative of
13the Commission shall be invited to each pre-filing public
15    (i) For applications filed after August 18, 2015 (the
16effective date of Public Act 99-399), the Commission shall, by
17certified mail, notify each owner of record of land, as
18identified in the records of the relevant county tax assessor,
19included in the right-of-way over which the utility seeks in
20its application to construct a high-voltage electric line of
21the time and place scheduled for the initial hearing on the
22public utility's application. The utility shall reimburse the
23Commission for the cost of the postage and supplies incurred
24for mailing the notice.
25(Source: P.A. 102-609, eff. 8-27-21; 102-662, eff. 9-15-21;
26102-813, eff. 5-13-22; 102-931, eff. 5-27-22.)



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1    Section 99. Effective date. This Act takes effect upon
2becoming law.