Residents in 14 communities in and around Sangamon County, Illinois have chosen to participate in community electric aggregation, meaning that all residents and small businesses in the incorporated areas that have not already chosen a retail electricity provider will now receive their electric supply from the retail electricity provider, First Energy.

The contract with First Energy sets electricity supply rates at 4.19 cents per kilowatt hour (cents/kWh), and will last from May this year until March 2014. Expected savings for on electric supply is about 23 percent for residents and about 26 percent for typical small businesses, compared to the current rates of the area’s utility, Ameren. The savings doesn’t reflect a 23 percent or 26 percent savings on total electric bills, since delivery and transmission charges are separated from the electric supply rate (what electric customers can shop around for).

Unlike in most of the areas that voted for electric aggregation last November, residents and businesses in the unincorporated Sangamon County voted against plan. In an effort to please all communities, residents and businesses in unincorporated Sangamon County are able to choose on their own whether or not they’d like to participate. All other residents and small businesses will automatically be switched to First Energy unless they opt out.

Residents and Businesses Can Save Even More by Shopping on Their Own

What many residents and businesses in the Sangamon County area don’t realize is that there is potential for even more savings. Customers can still shop around on their own to find even lower rates, but must opt out of the aggregation program first. Ameren is currently sending out “opt-out” postcards to all account holders in the area. When customers opt out, they will continue to receive their electric supply from Ameren until they choose their own retail electricity provider.

Customers that have already chosen a retail electricity provider will not be affected and will continue to receive their electric supply from the provider they had previously signed up with.

Here at ElectricityRates.com, we make finding a retail electricity provider with lower rates a very simply process: Just type your ZIP Code into the orange box at the top of this page, click “Compare” and then select Ameren as your utility. The tool is free, and if you find a provider for you, you can easily make the switch by clicking on your plan of choice and filling out a simple online form.

Learn more about comparing retail electricity provider and plans.