The Ogle County Board recently passed a resolution requesting that the Illinois legislature support Illinois nuclear power.

The full text of the resolution is below.

Resolution 2020-1008

Supporting the Byron Station Nuclear Power Plant

Whereas, Governor Pritzker published “Putting Consumers & Climate First” plan announced August 20th 2020 with several of the principles in the plan as being “Expand Consumer Affordability Protections; Make Illinois a Renewable Energy Leader & Phase Out Dirty Power; Implement a Market-Based Solution That Supports Clean Power & Clean Air; Electrify & Decarbonize Illinois’ Transportation Sector; Support Communities & Counties Transitioning to Clean Energy; Advance Equity in the Growing Clean Energy Economy; and Enhancing energy Efficiency in Illinois; and

Whereas, Ogle County is a rural community located in northern Illinois. Ogle County is an agricultural and energy producing county. Ogle County supports energy industries including nuclear, natural gas, solar that provides reliable and diverse energy and economic benefits; and

Whereas, two of the six nuclear energy plants are under the threat of closure due to financial risk. Without legislature from the State of Illinois to increase payment, Byron and Dresden could shut down before planned closure dates; and

Whereas, Nuclear energy plants produce 52.2 percent of Illinois’ electricity and employ more than 3,200 people directly in Illinois, almost 800 employees from the Byron plant live in Ogle and Winnebago County and an additional 50 permanent contractors; and

Whereas, without this plant, carbon reduction efforts would backslide by release of 12 million metric tons of carbon dioxide annually; and

Whereas, Illinois’ nuclear plants generate energy on a 24/7 basis and in virtually all weather conditions, helping ensure the reliability of our electric system; and

Whereas, Byron produces enough carbon-free electricity to serve over 2 million homes; and

Whereas, these four nuclear energy plants contribute about $146 million annually in state tax revenue; and

Whereas, Byron Station alone employs 727 local workers with an annual payroll approximately $82.5 million; and

Whereas, Byron Station contributes $38 million in annual property tax revenue supporting local schools, and public services, more than $185,000 in station and employee contributions was given to United Way and local organizations; and

Whereas, the Nuclear Community Coalition is working to provide safeguards within proposed legislation to protect our communities. The safeguards will include elements such as monies for proper resources to ensure safe long-term spent fuel storage after closure, property tax stepdown, and funding for future workforce and economic recovery; therefore, be it

Resolved, by the County of Ogle, that we urge the State of Illinois to support polices to preserved Illinois’ nuclear energy plants, because of their support for our local economy by creating thousands of jobs, strengthening the commitment to a pollution and carbon-free environment, and ensuring a more reliable electric grid for consumers and businesses; while creating a sustainable energy future for generations, and be it further

Resolved, that suitable copies of this Resolution be forwarded to our State Senators and State Representatives in the General Assembly and to the Governor of Illinois.

Presented and Adopted at the October 20, 2020 Ogle County Board meeting.