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PCR staff participated in months-long negotiations with Illinois utility companies over their 4-year plans. This was the first time in our state’s history that environmental justice groups participated in negotiations. And the outcomes reflect our priorities. We pushed for the plans to have greater emphasis than on equity, affordability, and programs serving under-resourced, low-income communities. In September 2021, the Illinois Commerce Commissions approved the plans, which included significantly expanded low-income and multifamily program budgets - about a $50 million increase across all four utilities, health and safety dollars to help address residential issues that can prevent energy efficiency work from being completed, stronger requirements for workforce diversity, and better coordination between energy efficiency, bill assistance, weatherization, and solar programs to help reduce barriers to enrollment and participation.