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Manar, Scherer introduce legislation to pay CWLP

manar cwlp billSPRINGFIELD – The state of Illinois owes Springfield’s City, Water, Light and Power more than $9 million in unpaid and overdue utility bills as a result of vetoes by Gov. Rauner.

State Senator Andy Manar (D-Bunker Hill) and Representative Sue Scherer (D-Decatur) have introduced legislation requiring the state to pay these bills.

“There’s no way any normal customer could go half a year without paying utility bills. The state is still a customer and its failure to pay is having a $9 million impact on Springfield and its residents who face potential increased utility costs,” Manar said.

“The longer the state goes without paying its bills, the greater the burden on the city becomes. It’s essential that we avoid a last resort situation where power to the Capitol and other state facilities could be shut off,” Scherer said.

The city has been providing state buildings with utility services without payment since the beginning of the fiscal year in July.

Normally, the state makes payments to CWLP after a 30-day period, but because of Rauner’s vetoes, state agencies headquartered in Springfield have no authority to cut checks for CWLP.

Last week, the Springfield City Council approved a formal request that the state begin paying its bills.

“The city has been put in a difficult position and we want to alleviate it as soon as possible,” Manar said.

The legislation, Senate Bill 2230, will authorize state agencies to make payments from the same state funds used last fiscal year.

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