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Senate Panel Rejects Kasich's PUCO Appointee

An Ohio Senate panel has rejected the governor's pick for a seat on the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio. Democratic energy attorney Howard Petricoff was appointed in July to meet a requirement preventing more than three commissioners from the same party. Democratic State Representative David Leland says the appointment process must be changed. Leland says Petricoff was qualified and experienced and would have provided "diversity in philosophy" as the commission regulates electric, gas and other utilities. Republican Ohio Senate President Keith Faber called the hearing  after raising concerns about potential conflicts of interest with his past legal work for energy clients. Petricoff was involved in the controversial coal plant bailout proposals by Akron-based FirstEnergy and Columbus-based American Electric Power.

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