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Pittsfield residents react to electricity bills that more than doubled in 2023

PITTSFIELD, Ill. (WGEM) — Electricity prices for Pittsfield residents are expected to drop from $0.043 per kilowatt hour to $0.122 per kilowatt hour by 2023.

Mayor Gary Mendenhall said the city’s current two-year contract with Homefield is set to expire at the end of 2022. So now the city is moving to Constellation Energy, which will reflect its first bill in February 2023.

Mendenhall said Constellation Energy was the best rates the city could find.

“I know there are all kinds of things going on in the world that are affecting the market right now,” Mendenhall said. “Not just with energy, but with natural gas prices and so we’re just trying to do what we can do for our citizens here.”

Mendenhall said the good thing is the city isn’t bound by the Constellation Energy contract, so if it finds lower rates, it can change without penalty. He said the downside is that he only expects prices to go up.

“It doesn’t look good right now for a while,” Mendenhall said. “But we hope things will calm down eventually.”

Pittsfield resident Skylar Sally said it was just one more financial hurdle to combat the rising cost of other possessions.

“We bought our house in 2020,” Sally said. “It has already doubled since we first bought it. So now it’s going to be more than triple since we bought the house.

As a stylist at Monroe Hair Salon, Sally said she expects it to have a ripple effect on her professional life as well.

“It’s going to affect the consumer,” Sally said. “Because their bill is going up and it’s going to be bad for everyone.”

Sally said she had to rent a booth at the salon for $325 a month in addition to buying her own hair supplies. It therefore depends on a sufficient number of monthly customers to get by.

If salon services are to increase due to inflation, consumers may not be able to afford to have their hair done, which Sally says could affect her job.

Mendenhall said the city is also considering energy alternatives such as solar panels.

He said residents had nothing to do when the tipping happened.

Residents also have the option to opt out of Constellation Energy for another supplier by visiting ICC.

Mendenhall said you have to be careful with contracts, as many may have seemingly low rates at first but could skyrocket months later.

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