Senator John Eklund (R-Chardon) this week introduced Senate Bill 128. The legislation imposes a new above-market charge on all customers in the FirstEnergy service territories. The revenue will be used to subsidize the two nuclear power plants operated by FirstEnergy’s subsidiary, FirstEnergy Solutions.
FirstEnergy Solutions is financially stressed, and potentially facing bankruptcy, the company has said. This bill is the latest in a series of attempts by the company to shore up its finances on the backs of its distribution customers.
The bill provides hundreds of millions per year for up to 16 years and can be increased by state regulators. Customers would not be able to “shop around” the charges.
The OMA opposes the bill. OMA president Eric Burkland issued a statement saying: “FirstEnergy should not be allowed to prop up its business on the backs of Ohio consumers. While manufacturers support nuclear power as part of an all-of-the-above energy portfolio, Senate Bill 128 is wolf in sheep’s clothing.” Read the full statement here. 4/6/2017