cunningham 011023SPRINGFIELD – With a looming power shortage on the grid, Illinois received a major boost to its renewable energy sector thanks to a bill sponsored by State Senator Bill Cunningham.

“There is an energy shortage in Illinois right now, and it is causing uncertainly, which causes prices to spike and potentially future brownouts,” said Cunningham, a Democrat who represents portions of Chicago and the Southwest Suburbs. “This legislation will help solve that problem by expanding renewable energy opportunities.”

The bill aims to relax restrictive zoning regulations that have slowed wind and solar energy projects to a near stop in Illinois. Without this measure, the state would lose 17,000 construction jobs and over $8 billion in economic impact during construction.

This package will make energy bills more affordable, bring thousands of jobs to the state and have great economic impact on local communities.

"Sen. Cunningham's bill is exactly what Illinois needs to create more good-paying construction jobs," said Sean Stott of the Laborers' International Union.  "Too often, wind and solar projects are being delayed for years, if not blocked permanently. This bill will bring more renewable projects online in Illinois and help create thousands of jobs in the process."

House Bill 4412 passed both chambers and heads to the governor’s desk for final approval.