“Nuke Bailout” Bill Sponsors Testify


This week, members of a senate committee heard from SB 128 bill sponsors Senators John Eklund (R-Chardon) and Frank LaRose (R-Copley). SB 128 (and companion legislation HB 178) would impose non-bypassble riders on FirstEnergy customers to subsidize its nuclear plants. The proposal mandates $300 million annually in new customer charges for up to 16 years. The senators testified: “Wholesale electricity prices are artificially and unsustainably low, making it nearly impossible for nuclear plants to operate in Ohio and nearby states.” The OMA joined a coalition with the Ohio Chemistry Technology Council, AARP and others in opposing the legislation. “This proposed nuclear bailout will hurt current Ohio businesses and could stop new businesses from investing in Ohio,” said OMA director, David W. Johnson, CEO, Summitville Tiles, Inc. “Senate Bill 128 and House Bill 178 will increase the cost of doing business in FirstEnergy’s territory.” In a coalition press release, OMA V.P. and Managing Director of Public Policy Services Ryan Augsburger, said “Manufacturers support nuclear power as part of an ‘all-of- the above’ energy portfolio, but Senate Bill 128 is a wolf in sheep’s clothing. The legislation would impose an unwarranted new multi-billion- dollar tax on Ohio businesses and families, stunt innovation and discourage investment in new generation assets in our state.”  5/4/2017