PUCO Requested Utility-Friendly Edits to Audit Report

Emails obtained via a public records request show staff at the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) directed an independent auditor to tone down its initial criticism of customer-funded subsidies for two coal-fired power plants owned by the Ohio Valley Electric Corp. (OVEC).

According to reports, the auditor — who was hired to examine the OVEC subsidies, which are directly tied to the scandal-ridden House Bill 6 — originally stated that “keeping the plants running does not seem to be in the best interests of ratepayers” and “the OVEC contract overall is not in the best interest of AEP Ohio ratepayers.” At the time, the PUCO was headed by former Chair Sam Randazzo, who later resigned due to his apparent ties to the HB 6 scandal. The final audit report contains a much milder tone.

The OMA remains committed to the repeal of these subsidies, which were forced on Ohio manufacturers. 10/7/2021