OMA Opposes Energy Subsidy Bill

On Wednesday at the Ohio Statehouse, Whirlpool Corp.’s Senior Manager of Government Relations Luke Harms testified on behalf of the OMA at a hearing on House Bill 6 — legislation that would impose new charges on electric customers in order to subsidize uneconomic generation facilities. (Harms’ testimony begins at 36:19 of this video.)

The OMA opposes HB 6 and was one of 100 organizations or individuals testifying this week against the proposal. If passed and signed into law, the aggregate cost of HB 6 to Ohio customers is estimated to exceed $300 million per year, indefinitely.

In his testimony before the House Energy Generation Subcommittee, Harms told lawmakers HB 6 would create “multiple new costs and new forms of costs for manufacturers.” He also noted that the bill seemingly would penalize companies like his that are using renewable, on-site electrical generation.

Also appearing at Wednesday’s hearing on behalf of the OMA were OMA Energy Counsel Kim Bojko, partner at Carpenter Lipps & Leland LLP, and Anthony Smith, Global Energy Coordinator at Cooper Tire & Rubber Company.

Later in the day, Ohio State University economist Dr. Edward “Ned” Hill expressed strong opposition to the bill, calling it “crony capitalism.” In his testimony (beginning at 2:22:45 of this video), Hill told lawmakers that HB 6’s “subsidies without end” would be “fundamentally detrimental to the state’s economic development,” potentially deterring future private investment in Ohio’s generation market. 4/25/2019