Rezin’s legislation to end Illinois’ nuclear moratorium for next generation of nuclear reactors becomes law

A 1980s ban on nuclear power plant construction in Illinois is coming to an end next year. Governor Pritzker on Friday signed a bill that will allow for the construction of small modular nuclear reactors. Illinois is joining a number of other states that recently have rescinded similar bans. The measure takes effect June 1st.

Meanwhile, Illinois Senate Deputy Minority Leader Sue Rezin’s (R-Morris) press release below.

The state of Illinois has officially taken the next step necessary to pave the way for the development of new nuclear reactors, as the Governor signed Illinois Senate Deputy Minority Leader Sue Rezin’s (R-Morris) legislation, House Bill 2473, to lift the nuclear moratorium on small modular reactors (SMRs) this afternoon.

“Illinois has a long, successful, and safe history of nuclear energy generation,” said Sen. Rezin. “The signing of House bill 2473 will ensure that our state can remain a leader in the energy sector by offering us the ability to utilize the amazing advancements in new nuclear energy technology.”

House Bill 2473 lifts the ban on next generation nuclear reactors less than 300 MW beginning January 1, 2026. Additionally, the Illinois Emergency Management Agency Office of Homeland Security will be directed to establish rules for reactor decommissioning, environmental monitoring, and emergency preparedness by January 1, 2026. The Illinois Environmental Protection Agency will also provide consultation.

“Today’s bill signing moves us one step closer towards our goal of energy independence by allowing clean, reliable energy production in Illinois,” said State Representative Lance Yednock (D-Ottawa). “By leading on this issue, Illinois is signaling to the rest of the country that we are open for business and ready for much needed economic development.”

Furthermore, House Bill 2473 authorizes the Governor to commission a new study to research the State’s role in guiding the development of new nuclear technology and makes conforming statutory changes, including updating references to IEMA-OHS in preexisting Illinois law.

“Lifting our state’s archaic moratorium on new nuclear energy construction will open the door for companies that have been developing new advanced nuclear energy technology the opportunity to invest in Illinois,” continued Sen. Rezin.

House Bill 2473 passed out of the General Assembly during its November veto session along a large bipartisan roll call in both the Senate and the House of Representatives.