Illinois General Assembly - Full Text of HB1472
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Full Text of HB1472  102nd General Assembly


Rep. Lawrence Walsh, Jr.

Filed: 4/20/2021





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2    AMENDMENT NO. ______. Amend House Bill 1472, AS AMENDED,
3by replacing everything after the enacting clause with the
5    "Section 5. The Illinois Administrative Procedure Act is
6amended by adding Section 5-45.8 as follows:
7    (5 ILCS 100/5-45.8 new)
8    Sec. 5-45.8. Emergency rulemaking; Public Utilities Act.
9To provide for the expeditious and timely implementation of
10changes made to the Public Utilities Act by this amendatory
11Act of the 102nd General Assembly, emergency rules
12implementing the changes made to the Public Utilities Act by
13this amendatory Act of the 102nd General Assembly may be
14adopted in accordance with Section 5-45 by the Illinois
15Commerce Commission. The adoption of emergency rules
16authorized by Section 5-45 and this Section is deemed to be



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1necessary for the public interest, safety, and welfare.
2    This Section is repealed on January 1, 2026.
3    Section 10. The Public Utilities Act is amended by adding
4Sections 4-701, 4-702, 9-228, and 16-131 as follows:
5    (220 ILCS 5/4-701 new)
6    Sec. 4-701. Electric Utility Independent Monitor.
7    (a) It is the policy of this State to ensure public
8utilities adhere to the highest standards of ethical conduct.
9Recent events have demonstrated that at least one public
10utility in this State has not adhered to the standards of
11conduct expected by the State, and as such, has breached the
12public trust. The General Assembly finds this offensive
13conduct warrants a response that ensures transparency and
14ethical standards are adhered to. The General Assembly
15therefore declares its intent to impose heightened scrutiny
16and rigorous standards to increase transparency and ensure
17ethics compliance. Further, it is the intent of the General
18Assembly to remediate public utility wrongdoing and penalize
20    (b) This Section applies to electric public utilities
21serving more than 3,000,000 retail customers in the State for
22the duration of any deferred prosecution agreement, pending
23criminal charges, ongoing criminal investigation, and term of
24criminal penalties against the public utility or any of its



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1officers or former officers.
2    (c) Within 60 days after the effective date of this
3amendatory Act of the 102nd General Assembly, the Commission
4shall begin the process of creating the position of Electric
5Utility Independent Monitor. The responsibilities of the
6Electric Utility Independent Monitor shall include the
8        (1) developing and publishing annual ethics audits of
9    electric public utilities serving more than 3,000,000
10    retail customers in the State;
11        (2) hiring additional staff or contract entities as
12    necessary to fulfill the obligations of this Section;
13        (3) developing a public reporting system to record
14    each and every communication, including who was present,
15    the subject matter discussed, materials provided or
16    discussed, whether the meeting was in-person, via video,
17    or telephonic, and the date and time of the communication,
18    between a representative, employee, officer, or executive
19    of an electric public utility and a Commissioner,
20    representative, employee, or staff of the Commission;
21        (4) overseeing an electric public utility's compliance
22    with the standards described by statute, rule, or court
23    order regarding standards of ethical conduct;
24        (5) working in coordination with an electric public
25    utility's highest officer responsible for compliance and
26    ethics, such as a Chief Compliance and Ethics Officer, to



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1    ensure the utility complies with ethics standards provided
2    by law, rule, and any other applicable authority, through
3    investigation, enforcement, reporting, and disciplinary
4    activities, including fines;
5        (6) documenting violations of statutes, rules, court
6    order, internal controls, Commission orders, or other
7    applicable authority regarding ethics and transparency and
8    ensure appropriate internal disciplinary actions are taken
9    and the violation is reported to the Commission when
10    appropriate;
11        (7) filing reports with the Commission of each and
12    every event where an electric public utility has not taken
13    disciplinary action for a violation of statutes, rules,
14    court order, internal controls, Commission orders, or
15    other applicable authority regarding ethics and
16    transparency, or where the public utility does not take a
17    disciplinary action that aligns with the recommendation of
18    the Electric Utility Independent Monitor;
19        (8) recommending to the Commission that it adopt new
20    internal controls, policies, practices, or procedures to
21    apply to an electric public utility to ensure compliance
22    with statute, rule, court order, or other applicable
23    authority;
24        (9) publishing an annual ethics audit for an electric
25    public utility subject to this Section describing the
26    electric public utility's internal controls, policies,



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1    practices, and procedures to comply with statutes, rules,
2    court orders, or other applicable authority; this report
3    should also include a record of any disciplinary actions
4    taken related to unethical conduct as well as any
5    recommendations the Electric Utility Independent Monitor
6    has made and the public utility's response;
7        (10) detailing deficiencies in a report to the
8    Commission and the General Assembly that shall include a
9    recommendation for Commission action if the Electric
10    Utility Independent Monitor finds that an electric public
11    utility has not complied with standards set forth by law,
12    rules, or by other applicable authority; and
13        (11) monitoring, auditing, and subpoenaing all records
14    necessary for the Electric Utility Independent Monitor to
15    meet the responsibilities described in this Section and
16    related rules, including, but not limited to, contracts
17    with third party entities, accounting records,
18    communication with public officials or their staff,
19    lobbying activities, expenses on lobbyists and
20    consultants, legal expenses, and internal compliance
21    policies.
22    (d) An electric public utility subject to this Section
23shall remit amounts necessary for the Commission to pay the
24wages, overhead, travel expenses, and other costs of the
25Electric Utility Independent Monitor and staff as determined
26by the Commission.



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1    (e) An electric public utility's cost of compliance with
2this Section is not a cost of service and shall not be
3recoverable in rates.
4    (f) Where an electric public utility is the subject of a
5federal or State criminal investigation or where the
6Commission initiates an investigation of an ethics violation,
7the utility's costs related to such investigation are not a
8cost of service and shall not be recoverable in rates.
9    (g) The Commission shall have the authority to retain an
10independent third party to serve as the Electric Utility
11Independent Monitor pursuant to this Section.
12    (h) The Commission shall have the authority to create
13rules and emergency rules where applicable to implement this
15    (220 ILCS 5/4-702 new)
16    Sec. 4-702. Electric utility audit.
17    (a) Within 30 days after the effective date of this
18amendatory Act of the 102nd General Assembly, the Commission
19may begin the process of contracting with a third party or
20hiring additional personnel as needed to conduct an audit
21pursuant to this Section.
22    (b) The Commission shall conduct an audit of all electric
23systems investments made by a participating utility, other
24than a combination utility. This audit shall include a review



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1        (1) system upgrade costs and intended benefits;
2        (2) whether the investment was part of the
3    participating utility's investment obligations under
4    subsection (b) of Section 16-108.5 of this Act;
5        (3) benefits to ratepayers;
6        (4) efficiencies gained as a result of investments
7    made by the participating utility;
8        (5) steps taken to minimize costs to consumers; and
9        (6) any other information the Commission determines is
10    necessary to analyze the costs and benefits of these smart
11    grid electric systems upgrades.
12    (c) The Commission must prepare and file a final report
13with the General Assembly analyzing the costs and benefits of
14the smart meter program and other smart grid electric systems
15upgrades no later than 2 years after the effective date of this
16amendatory Act of the 102nd General Assembly.
17    (d) The Commission is authorized to monitor, audit, and
18subpoena all records necessary to meet responsibilities
19described in this Section.
20    (e) An electric public utility subject to this Section
21shall remit amounts necessary for the Commission to pay the
22wages, contract costs, overhead, travel expenses, and other
23costs incurred to meet the responsibilities of this Section.
24The electric public utility's cost of compliance with this
25Section is not a cost of service shall not be recoverable in



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1    (220 ILCS 5/9-228 new)
2    Sec. 9-228. Limits on public utility expenses. The
3Commission shall not consider any of the following as an
4expense of any public utility company, including any
5allocation of those costs to the public utility from an
6affiliate or corporate parent for the purpose of determining
7any rate or charge, any amount expended for:
8        (1) the pension or other post-employment benefits for
9    an employee convicted of committing a criminal act in the
10    course of his or her work with the utility;
11        (2) any severance or post-employment costs for an
12    employee convicted of committing a criminal act in the
13    course of his or her work with the utility; and
14        (3) criminal penalties, fines, fees, and costs related
15    to criminal charges, criminal investigations, or deferred
16    prosecution agreements.
17    (220 ILCS 5/16-131 new)
18    Sec. 16-131. Criminal penalty electric utility rebate.
19    (a) It is the policy of this State that ethical and
20criminal misconduct by electric utilities harms ratepayers by
21destroying public trust. The General Assembly finds it
22necessary to remediate harm caused by electric utilities by
23requiring that criminal penalties, or an amount equal to the
24criminal penalty paid by an electric utility, be rebated to



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1ratepayers as restitution for the breach of public trust.
2    (b) Electric utilities shall rebate to ratepayers an
3amount equal to the total amount of penalties or fines paid to
4the State or federal government in the preceding 12 months as a
5result of a criminal investigation, criminal charge, or
6deferred prosecution agreement beginning in the year
7subsequent to the remittance of the penalty or fine. This
8rebate shall be amortized in the rates over a period of 3
10    (c) The rebate amount is not a cost of service and shall
11not be recoverable through rates.
12    (d) The utility must file a rebate rider tariff with the
13Commission and any bill adjustment resulting from such rebate
14rider shall appear as a separate line item on the customer's
16    (e) An electric utility must submit all information
17regarding criminal fines, fees, and penalties annually to the
19    (f) The Commission shall have emergency rulemaking
20authority to implement this Section.
21    Section 99. Effective date. This Act takes effect upon
22becoming law.".