Nuclear Bailout Supporters Seek to Block Referendum

Owners of nuclear power plants who are eager to get customers to subsidize their business filed suit with the Supreme Court of Ohio on Wednesday in an attempt to block a proposed referendum to repeal House Bill 6. The owners assert that a referendum should not be allowed to proceed because HB 6 is a “tax” — and legislation creating taxes are not subject to referendum under the Ohio Constitution.

Gene Pierce, spokesman for the pro-repeal Ohioans Against Corporate Bailouts, responded by saying that “this frivolous lawsuit is another desperate attempt by FES (FirstEnergy Solutions) to protect their ill-gotten, billion-dollar bailout. In addition to having no legal basis, their own proponents in the legislature repeatedly stated that HB 6 was not a tax increase in their efforts to secure enough votes for passage of the bill.”

Meanwhile, bailout proponents continue to run misleading TV and radio commercials aimed at dissuading Ohioans from signing the referendum petition. The ads have attracted national attention, such as this analysis from a Bloomberg columnist. This week, referendum opponents also dropped direct mail. 9/5/2019