Utilities Seek to Muzzle OMA Expert Regarding OVEC Subsidies and Ties to House Bill 6


As previously reported, Ohioans have over the years paid an estimated $400 million in subsidies to a pair of 1950s-era coal plants, one of which is in Indiana. By 2030, that total is expected to grow to $850 million, according to a study conducted for the OMA. These facilities are operated by the Ohio Valley Electric Corporation (OVEC), which is partly owned by Duke Energy Ohio, AES Ohio, and AEP Ohio. The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) is conducting an audit proceeding to examine OVEC’s customer-funded subsidies, codified in 2019 as part of the scandal-plagued House Bill 6. The OMA Energy Group is leading the fight to disallow all OVEC subsidies collected from customers during 2020. Subject-matter expertise is being provided by the OMA’s energy engineering consultant, John Seryak of RunnerStone LLC. This week, Duke, AES Ohio, and AEP Ohio filed a motion to strike key portions of Seryak’s written testimony discussing the HB 6 scandal, the involvement of former PUCO Chair Sam Randazzo, and how HB 6 authorized the OVEC subsidy. If the utilities get their way, Seryak would be prohibited from providing approximately half of testimony he had prepared for the PUCO’s consideration. Stay tuned for updates on this development. 11/2/2023