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updated: 6/11/2014 4:24 PM

Chicago, CUB seek investigation of electric market

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Associated Press

The Citizens Utility Board and the city of Chicago are asking the Illinois Commerce Commission to investigate whether alternative electricity suppliers are misleading consumers into paying too much.

City and CUB officials said Wednesday that they've gotten complaints about confusing offers, misleading pitches and prices up to six times higher than the utility rate.

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They filed a petition with the ICC asking regulators to investigate whether suppliers are violating a state law that requires them to disclose their prices, terms and conditions in writing -- and in plain language.

More than 3 million Illinois consumers have switched from ComEd or Ameren Illinois to an alternative supplier since 2010. That's when Illinois' electricity market was deregulated. The change allowed communities and residents to buy their own electricity to save money.

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