East St. Louis could become the home of a "solar panel farm" that would provide power to Ameren customers. That's the idea behind a bill passing the Illinois Senate yesterday, which would fund the project with a small hike in rates for Ameren customers. The project would be developed by a private company on abandoned brownfield property in East St. Louis.

It would be funded by cleanup fees imposed on the original polluters and by an Ameren rate hike of about 32- cents-per-customer per-year. The measure is now up for House consideration.

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