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220 ILCS 10/5

    (220 ILCS 10/5) (from Ch. 111 2/3, par. 905)
    Sec. 5. Powers and duties.
    (1) The corporation shall:
        (a) Represent and protect the interests of the
residential utility consumers of this State. All actions by the corporation under this Act shall be directed toward such duty; provided that the corporation may also give due consideration to the interests of business in the State.
        (b) Inform, in so far as possible, all utility
consumers about the corporation, including the procedure for obtaining membership in the corporation.
    (2) The corporation shall have all the powers necessary or convenient for the effective representation and protection of the interest of utility consumers and to implement this Act, including the following powers in addition to all other powers granted by this Act.
        (a) To make, amend and repeal bylaws and rules for
the regulation of its affairs and the conduct of its business; to adopt an official seal and alter it at pleasure; to maintain an office; to sue and be sued in its own name, plead and be impleaded; and to make and execute contracts and other instruments necessary or convenient to the exercise of the powers of the corporation.
        (b) To employ such agents, employees and special
advisors as it finds necessary and to fix their compensation.
        (c) To solicit and accept gifts, loans, including
loans made by the Illinois Commerce Commission from funds appropriated for that purpose by law, or other aid in order to support activities concerning the interests of utility consumers. Except as provided in Section 5.1, the corporation may not accept gifts, loans or other aid from any public utility or from any director, employee or agent or member of the immediate family of a director, employee or agent of any public utility and, after the first election the corporation, may not accept from any individual, private corporation, association or partnership in any single year a total of more than $1,000 in gifts. Under this paragraph, "aid" does not mean payment of membership dues.
        (d) To intervene as a party or otherwise participate
on behalf of utility consumers in any proceeding which affects the interest of utility consumers.
        (e) To represent the interests of utility consumers
before the Illinois Commerce Commission, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, the Federal Communications Commission, the courts, and other public bodies, except that no director, employee or agent of the corporation may engage in lobbying without first complying with any applicable statute, administrative rule or other regulation relating to lobbying.
        (f) To establish annual dues which shall be set at a
level that provides sufficient funding for the corporation to effectively perform its powers and duties, and is affordable for as many utility consumers as is possible.
        (g) To implement solicitation for corporation funding
and membership.
        (h) To seek tax exempt status under State and federal
law, including 501(c)(3) status under the United States Internal Revenue Code.
        (i) To provide information and advice to utility
consumers on any matter with respect to utility service, including but not limited to information and advice on benefits and methods of energy conservation.
    (3) The powers, duties, rights and privileges conferred or imposed upon the corporation by this Act may not be transferred.
    (4) The corporation shall refrain from interfering with collective bargaining rights of any employees of a public utility.
(Source: P.A. 91-50, eff. 6-30-99.)