OSU Economist Testifies Against FirstEnergy “Nuke Bailout” Bill


OSU economist Ned Hill testified this week against FirstEnergy’s proposed nuclear generating plants subsidy bill, HB 178. Hill stated: “All of the (investor owned utilities) share two goals. The first is to use the power of either the PUCO or the Ohio Legislature to mandate the purchase of expensive existing Ohio power plants first and to ensure that competitive market forces do not force them to either write down the asset-value of their generating assets, protecting their stock values, or to close the plants. The second is to upend, circumvent, and destroy the competitive electricity generating market managed by PJM Interconnect.” With regard to the massive subsidies proposed by the bill, he said: “Keeping expensive and technically obsolete nuclear power plants in subsidized operation will be a barrier to lower-cost, lower-carbon electricity production.”  The day after this week’s hearing, the chairman of the House Public Utilities Committee, Rep. Bill Seitz, announced that hearings on the measure will be suspended for now.  5/18/2017