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Lawmakers Table FirstEnergy's Nuclear Plant Bailout Proposal

May 31, 2017

FirstEnergy CEO Chuck Jones speaks to Ohio lawmakers about bailout proposal
Credit Ohio Public Radio

Ohio lawmakers have tabled Akron-based FirstEnergy's proposal to raise customer rates to bailout its two Ohio nuclear power plants.

A key lawmaker is floating an alternative solution. Jeff St. Clair of member station WKSU in Kent reports.

FirstEnergy says it needs the $300 million per year the customer fee will generate to keep its two Ohio nuclear plants operating.

 

The utility has repeatedly said it may sell the plants or close them, even with the subsidy.

The proposed fee will raise electric bills by 5 percent.

 

Cincinnati Republican Bill Seitz, chair of the House Public Utilities committee, halted hearings on the plan earlier this month and says he won’t schedule a vote...

 

“Until I have such clear indication that there is sufficient support both on the committee and within the House…” :07

 

Seitz is floating a change to the proposal that he says has support from some committee members…

 

“We would give all FirstEnergy customers a once time option to opt out of paying.” :07

 

Seitz says the opt-out idea mirrors a measure the House passed in March that allows utilities to opt out of renewable energy requirements.

 

He says FirstEnergy does not want that option for the nuclear subsidy bill.