HENDERSON, Ky. (WEHT) — Attorney General Kwame Raoul announced today that the Illinois House of Representatives passed his bill to protect residents from gas or electric utility service disconnection for missing bill payments when temperatures are 90 degrees or above when excessive heat watches are issued.

The bill was set up to amend the Public Utilities Act, which prohibits disconnection when the temperature is 95 degrees or hotter.

Raoul talked about why the bill needed to become law.

“Summertime heat in Illinois is not the time to put lives at risk. Too often, Illinois residents die in heat waves that can easily be prevented by lowering the threshold for utility shutoffs. This updated legislation will protect the health and safety of Illinois’ most vulnerable citizens during extreme heat events by prohibiting electric and gas utilities from disconnecting service for nonpayment.”

Raoul reminded lawmakers that both humidity and temperature are important factors that should be taken into account when talking about heat.