Earlier this year Governor John Kasich appointed veteran energy attorney M. Howard Petricoff to a vacancy on the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO). These appointments are subject to Senate confirmation. This week, members of the Senate Public Utilities Committee voted along party lines to withhold support for the confirmation of Commissioner Petricoff. If the full Senate votes to withhold support for Mr. Petricoff’s appointment in the remaining days of session, then the commissioner would be unable to continue to serve.
The Senate Committee chair, Bill Seitz (R-Cincinnati), said the vote against Petricoff wasn’t about his qualifications or character, but because of his past involvement in energy lobbying. The OMA supported Mr. Petricoff’s appointment. It’s the worst-kept secret around the Statehouse that utility lobbyists don’t favor Commissioner Petricoff. 12/1/2016