Chamber Cooperative Energy Buying Program

Energy Co-Op

Save money on your business electric and natural gas expenses with the Chamber Cooperative Energy Buying Program

Program Benefits

  • Increased Purchasing Power in procuring electric and natural gas at competitive rates.
  • Long Term Budget Stability
  • Low Fixed Rate monthly bills
  • Eliminates the need to “go through it alone”.
  • Assistance in being Proactive in fulfilling energy buying needs.
  • Customer Service assistance takes the headache out of billing erorrs and service issues
  • Expert Consultants handle the details
  • Free Energy Education and Training Programs

Program Eligibility

  • Free Energy Education and Training Programs
  • You must be in the Ameren Illinois or ComEd / Nicor Utility Zones
  • If you are under contract with another Retail Supplier, it must be set to expire within 6 months

In Partnership with

Our partner, CQI Associates, manages the member education and bid phases of the program, oversee the transition of the members' energy accounts, and offer continuing technical expertise to members throughout the term of the energy contracts. This program offers FREE informational seminars and webinars about energy management and valuable insight into energy procurement options.


see what actual program participants are saying

We have been using CQI associates through the Effingham Chamber of Commerce for 7 years now and their service has been unmatched. Brian McLemore has been my main point of contact during this time and he has always responded to any concerns or questions in a very timely manner. We have checked his pricing at the time of contract renewal and he has always offered the best price. This service has allowed Meyer Oil Company to rely on a consistent budget for our electric needs and CQI has always taken care of the paperwork. All we have needed to do is provide an invoice and sign the contract. I would recommend CQI to anyone that wants to control the electric costs.

— Alan Meyer, Fuel Manager, Meyer Oil Co

I would like to take a moment to thank you for your help With the electric program. This is a great example of how well the chamber helps us run more efficiently.

— John Mette, Effingham Builders Supply

This program has made my life easier and has saved my business money!

— Kathy Thomas, Owner, The Thomas Shop

Since having joined the Effingham Chamber's Electricity Program, we have realized substantial savings of 20% compared to our previous electricity supplier. I have and will continue to recommend this program to any Chamber member.

— Tony Weber, Weber's Clothing Inc.

Frequently Asked Questions

The following rate classes are available to join the Chamber Energy Co-op:

Ameren or ComEd customers:

  • DS 1 – Residential Electric Customers (where municipal aggregation does not exist)
  • DS 2 – GDS 2 – Small Commercial accounts
  • DS 3 – GDS 2 – Mid-sized Commercial accounts
  • DS-4 – GDS 4 – Large commercial accounts

You can receive it from the Chamber of Commerce either by downloading it from our website below or picking one up in person. You can also have the application faxed or emailed to you.

There is no fee to join the program. It is a member-only benefit of Chamber membership.

That depends upon the amount of electricity your business uses and the rate class you are in. Since each business’ usage varies, each business’ reduction will be different as well. Based on past experience, DS-2 accounts typically can expect to see 8 to 10% cost savings over the utility. DS-3 accounts can expect a 10 to 14% reduction and DS-4 accounts (over 3-megawatt load) can expect cost reductions of 12 to 18% over the utility.

Each member of the co-op will individually accept or reject the bid. You do not have to accept the bid. If you reject the bid, you will stay with or go back to your utility for service with no interruptions in service.

It is possible to be denied credit from a supplier. The suppliers check credit and payment history with your utility in order to protect the rest of the group’s rate from delinquent members.

Each member is required to submit copies of their most recent bill for each account that is to be included in the co-op. The consultants and suppliers need important information from these bills in order to enroll you. Account numbers, meter numbers, service address, and billing address are required to give the utility notification that a switch is being made. The selected supplier uses the information for credit approval.

Your contract will remain in effect. Remember, that the rates at the utility fluctuate and they may go down slightly for a period of time. The goal of the co-op is to show reduction over a longer period of time and provide budget stability. If you want to play the market or search for the rock bottom price, the co-op may not be what you are looking for.

If you decide you no longer want to be in the contract, you are subject to “early termination fees”. These fees are calculated by how long you have left on your contract and the price the supplier paid for your electricity. Natural disaster, fires or unexpected damage to your business is not grounds for these fees. Your supplier should be notified immediately if any major disruption in service occurs.

The Chamber and CQI Associates cannot guarantee that another third-party supplier will not offer a better rate than the rate the coop is offering. What we offer is a rate better than what the utility offers on a regular basis. We use long-term fixed-rate contracts in order to provide you with cost reduction and budget stability. An energy expert negotiates your contracts and the rates are competitively bid among eligible suppliers. The consultants thoroughly evaluate the contract terms and conditions to make certain it does not contain hidden language, price changes, term changes, or language that could have unintended consequences in the future.

Your co-op rate can be moved to a new location, with approval from the supplier. Expansion to a larger facility may require additional accounts. It is advisable to give at least 45 days advance notice.

The new owner will need to undergo a credit check in advance of reassignment of the contract. Again, it is advisable to give at least 45 days advance notice of any business changes.

Absolutely. As long as the location is in the Ameren or Com-Ed territory we can add them to the Chamber co-op. If they are outside of those territories, we would need to ask the consultant if that area is open for retail service. Businesses served by rural or municipal cooperatives are not eligible for this program.

For More Info Contact

Shelby Dupont
CQI Associates, LLC

Skip to content