Skip to main content

Neighbors of Kane County

Lawsuit against Batavia electricity dismissed

Sep 11, 2015 11:48AM ● By Neighbors Magazines

According to Geoff Ziezulewics, in his recent article “Batavia electricity lawsuit dismissed, in the Chicago Tribune, “A lawsuit filed last summer by nine Batavia residents against those they claim were responsible for high electricity prices was dismissed last week by a federal judge.” The judge determined that the residents could not sue due to members not being responsible for negotiating with electric providers.

The lawsuit came about because residents claimed defendants were not clear regarding the cost and quality of electricity purchased from a downstate coal plant. Residents claim that electricity bills dramatically increased as a result of the change.

Ziezulewics states, “In a 25-page opinion, US District Judge Rebecca Pallmeyer wrote that, based on the plaintiff’s allegations, the town’s arrangement with Prairie State Energy Campus was ‘an ill-advised power agreement for which the Plaintiff must now foot the bill.’”

The plaintiffs have no grounds for the claim against the defendants, Indiana Municipal Power Agency; its president, Rajeshwar Rao; its subsidiary, Batavia consultants ISC; and consultant Sargent & Lundy and Skelly and Loy. The agreement was negotiated by the city’s elected officials.

When describing a background summary, Ziezulewics describes, “the suit alleges the Batavy City Council hired ISC in May 2004 to consult on new electricity supply option as the expiration date of a deal with ComEd neared”. The Indiana Municipal Power Agency signed a letter of intent in order to gain partial ownership of the Prairei State coal fired power plan, that same day.

According to plaintiffs, city officials were not informed of that deal. The article states that, “Plaintiffs alleged that IMPA, Rao, and ISC ‘were aware of, but failed to disclose certain information that would have generated doubts about the PSEC project’s prospects for success,’ according to the opinion’s summary section.”

However, the ruling determined that the plaintiffs were not involved in any business agreement with the defendants, therefore they have no claim to make.