Illinois bill to keep Exelon plant open is running out of time

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CORDOVA, Illinois - Hundreds of supporters will travel to the Illinois capitol, pushing a bill that will keep the Quad Cities nuclear plant, Exelon, open, saving hundreds of jobs.

The generating plant is running out of time.

Bill Stoermer, the senior communications manager for Exelon says the company is relying on a piece of legislation out of Springfield to keep the nuclear plant open.

"It ensures long-term operations of the plant, long-term employment, long-term property tax payments for the state which are certainly in jeopardy without this legislation," said Stoermer.

The bill is called The Next Generation Plan.

It's designed to provide clean energy, but also keep two at-risk nuclear plants from closing.

The company says that means the Quad City plant would operate until its license expires in 2032.

If the bill doesn't go through, Stoermer says the company will shut down the plantĀ  in two years.

"We've got 800 employees here, " said Stoermer.

However, not everyone agrees.

An Illinois consumer's coalition called BEST Coalition says its fine with promoting nuclear energy, but says part of the bill is just a way for Exelon to make a profit.

"There are numerous aspects of this bill that are just egregious money grabs," said Dave Lundy, Director of BEST Coalition.

Lundy says the revenues are higher than expected, the bill lets Exelon keep the extra cash.

"I'm not sure at a time when social services agencies around the state are being decimated and people are struggling is a time when a company that made $2 billion in profits last year should be asking for even more money because they're just not profitable enough."

The bill also means an increase in people's bills.

Those customers are in Northern Illinois, which include counties like Erie, Sterling, and Prophetstown.

Stoermer says it's an increase of 25 cents per month.