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State Lawmakers Pass Nuclear Plant ‘Bailout’

(Chicago Tonight)(Chicago Tonight)

After a long debate, a last-minute push to bail out two downstate nuclear plants passed the Illinois General Assembly late Thursday at the tail end of the veto session.

The bill subsidizes Exelon nuclear plants in Clinton and the Quad Cities that the company says are hurting because of cheap natural gas.

Opponents say it will mean a hike in energy bills and that a private business shouldn’t get a bailout. But supporters argued that the bill could actually save consumers money and will save Illinois jobs. After last-minute tweaks, Gov. Bruce Rauner announced his support of the bill, which also includes clean energy provisions.

Crain’s Chicago Business reports that Dynegy, Exelon’s nearest competitor, has threatened legal action over the bill and plans to target lawmakers who supported it.

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