Wednesday, September 1
“We applaud everyone who has been working around the clock to forge a deal. We are nearly there. Passing a version of this bill out of the Senate last evening is a major step forward for Illinois after multiple failed efforts in previous years to reach even that milestone. We look forward now to working with our partners in the House to make history in both chambers.
A comprehensive policy to secure Illinois’ clean energy future hinges on a singular albeit complicated issue. Labor has made significant compromises during this process, as have the other parties. Assuming all parties stay cognizant of the dire cost of failure, we believe we can work through the remaining differences to reach an agreed bill.
The urgency of this issue cannot be understated. If the legislature falls short of passing an energy bill in the next several days, our elected officials’ inaction will set off a series of dire consequences.
Thousands of union workers who operate Illinois’ clean energy nuclear plants will be out of a job. Communities that rely on the plants to fund schools and emergency services will suffer from a devastating loss of millions of dollars of annual revenue. Tens of thousands of new jobs and apprenticeships for underserved communities will go unfilled, and residents across the state will bear the growing burdens of the climate crisis as the dirtiest fossil generators will continue to pollute and emit carbon in Illinois.
Quite simply, none of us can afford to allow this scenario to come to life. On behalf of all of organized labor in Illinois, we remain committed to continuing the work to finalize this agreement and pass this bill. We owe it to our members, to their families and to all future generations to continue this fight until we get it right.”