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IL Nuclear Moratorium Safe -- For Now

...but now is the time to prepare for the next round)

Greetings All --
We finally have something to celebrate!

We wanted to be absolutely sure before we wrote this note, but we have now confirmed from several sources that the legislation that would have repealed the IL nuclear construction moratorium did not move in this last legislative session in the Capitol. For the time being, the moratorium is safe.

We at NEIS thank all of you who helped keep the pressure on our officials to keep the moratorium and the Renewables Portfolio Standard (RPS) intact.

The House chose not to move on Rep. JoAnn Osmond's HB875; it was never voted on. In the Senate political machinations resulted in the transfer of control of Sen. Michael Clayborne's SB2162 to Sen. Michael Bond. Sen. Bond attempted to attach an amendment to the legislation after the amendment deadline, and this was not allowed or acted upon, preventing the bill from moving. Since no action was taken, the moratorium stands.

We are warned however that there are always ways to resurrect things in a future session -- like the one ending this Spring, and even the Fall veto session. So like the undead, this legislation could return, perhaps unexpectedly (yet again). Another possibility is that the same moratorium-repeal language was used by Sen. Clayborne in a different piece of legislation, which IS eligible for action in the remaining Spring session, and which has already passed the House as a shell bill. We and our allies on Springfield will watch out for this back-door possibility.

What you can do:

1. Send thank-yous:
Thank your legislators if they opposed the bills, and House Speaker Madigan for not calling the bill in the House. The latter may be the single most effective barrier we have to preventing the bill from passing in some sneaky back-door way.
2. Keep up the pressure:
Over the Spring and Summer, NEIS will continue getting groups to sign on to our Position Statement.
We were able to get over 20 organizations and more individuals to sign this the final week before the session ended.
We will be spending the summer getting hundreds of Illinois groups to sign this Statement -- to have them ready for the inevitable next round. Please get organizations you know to sign on to this Statement, and return them to NEIS. They do not have to be environmental groups. Business and community groups, congregations, etc. are fine as well. If you know of prestigious individuals who would support this Statement, please ask them to sign as individuals.

Thank you all for your efforts! We won this one! That's how democracy works -- one vote at a time.
Stay well, keep doing great things!
--Dave Kraft, Director--

Background Information:

NEIS' fact sheet "Reasons Why Illinois Should Keep Its Nuclear Construction Moratorium"

Our background paper, "Repealing the IL Nuclear Moratorium Sabotages the Renewable Energy Portfolio Standard"

The Bill can be found here (Type in the bill numbers in the search feature on the left side of the screen.)

Considerations of the Nuclear Moratorium Repeal

Analysis of HB2971 Amendment 1 (the same objections from 2008’s legislation apply to this year’s versions...)

Based on previous comments, it would appear that Exelon should oppose the moratorium's repeal.

Status & Updates:

Nuclear energy moratorium likely to hold fast in Illinois House by Phil Taylor at Medill Reports Chicago, May 21st 2008

Current Bill status is available here.


Action Alert, March 23, 2009: as a web page or as a .pdf for printing


Petition Supporting the Illinois Nuclear Moratorium

Organizational Sign-on:

Organizational Position Statement supporting the Illinois Nuclear Moratorium

Press Materials :

HB2971 Sample Talking Points (the same points apply to HB875/SB2162 ...)

Our Op Ed from April 3, 2008

Contact Your Legislators:

We ask that you contact your State legislators (Senate and House) urging them to vote against ANY repealing the moratorium.
If you do not know who your reps/senator are you can go to for both Legislator Lookup (in the Additional Resources section), and then get contact information.

Finally -- and this is important -- please feed back to us the responses you get from your officials when you contact them.