The Illinois General Assembly created the Citizens Utility Board in 1983 to represent the interests of residential and small-business utility customers throughout the Land of Lincoln. That’s a job done in almost every other state by government agencies.

The legislature created CUB as a membership-based organization. An initial $100,000 loan of “seed money” provided by the state in the enabling legislation was repaid by CUB on time and with interest.

Scope of Work

CUB is primarily funded by Illinois consumers through donations of as little as $10 a year. Because CUB works for legislation that benefits ratepayers, contributions to CUB are not tax deductible.

Utility Bill Inserts

The original CUB Act required utilities to include CUB membership flyers in utility bills and CUB used these inserts to build a membership base to fund its work. In 1986, however, the utilities successfully blocked the inserts in federal court. In response, the state legislature modified the law and CUB now is allowed to include membership inserts in mass mailings from state agencies.

CUB pays for the printing of the inserts and for any additional costs incurred by the agencies when they mail the flyers. The content of the inserts must be approved by the ICC.