Ohio cities settle civil claims related to power plant bailout

In a consolidated case, the Ohio attorney general’s office wants to move ahead on its civil racketeering case against FirstEnergy, Energy Harbor and others. This article is provided by Eye on Ohio, the nonprofit, nonpartisan Ohio Center for Journalism in partnership with the nonprofit Energy News Network. Please join the free mailing lists for Eye on Ohio or the Energy News Network, as this helps provide more public service reporting. The cities of Cincinnati and Columbus have dismissed their state court claims against FirstEnergy and Energy Harbor for the companies’ actions relating to House Bill 6, the nuclear and coal bailout law at the heart of a $60 million corruption case in Ohio. “The dismissal was the result of negotiations with the defendants, the court’s ruling in our favor, and the partial repeal of HB 6,” said Andrew Garth, interim city solicitor for Cincinnati.  

The Dec.

FirstEnergy says Ohio law at center of corruption probe protects it from ratepayer lawsuits

Class action case casts doubt on the integrity of the PUCO’s own actions in light of alleged corruption. This article is provided by Eye on Ohio, the nonprofit, nonpartisan Ohio Center for Journalism in partnership with the nonprofit Energy News Network. Please join the free mailing lists for Eye on Ohio or the Energy News Network, as this helps provide more public service reporting. Despite admitting to alleged bribes and unlawful activity that led to the passage of House Bill 6, FirstEnergy just argued that the law and orders under it shield the company from lawsuits from ratepayers. The argument came in a class action lawsuit brought on behalf of ratepayers who are or will be subject to higher rates as a result of House Bill 6.

FirstEnergy and AEP still spending big on lobbying

Although FirstEnergy dialed back reported campaign spending in the wake of House Bill 6, the company spent $500,000 on congressional lobbying from July through September. AEP spent even more. This article is provided by Eye on Ohio, the nonprofit, nonpartisan Ohio Center for Journalism in partnership with the nonprofit Energy News Network. Please join the free mailing lists for Eye on Ohioor the Energy News Network, as this helps provide more public service reporting. Ohio utilities are still backing candidates or lobbying for legislative actions that could subsidize fossil fuels or slow the growth of renewable energy, according to their latest filings.

FirstEnergy, DeWine’s office and others still far from full disclosure on HB 6

Roadblocks at the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio, in Gov. Mike DeWine’s office and elsewhere could make it harder to prevent future corruption. This article is provided by Eye on Ohio, the nonprofit, nonpartisan Ohio Center for Journalism in partnership with the nonprofit Energy News Network. Please join the free mailing lists for Eye on Ohio or the Energy News Network, as this helps provide more public service reporting. Advocates, lawmakers, regulators and the public still can’t get all documents relevant to the state’s $60 million House Bill 6 scandal involving ousted Ohio House Speaker Larry Householder, FirstEnergy and others. Barriers include protective orders, privilege and confidentiality claims, delays and other roadblocks.

Critics fear investors’ push for profits could thwart other FirstEnergy priorities

FirstEnergy news raises questions about grid resiliency and clean energy approaches to cope with climate change. A notorious investor’s plan to acquire a significant stake in FirstEnergy voting shares has critics worried that pressure to turn quick profits could undercut the company’s duties to ratepayers and need to invest in a cleaner and more resilient grid. In its Feb. 18 earnings call, FirstEnergy revealed it had received notice of Icahn Capital’s intent to acquire between $184 million and $920 million in voting securities. The fund would have a minority voting interest, but it might be enough to sway changes in its board of directors, company management and more.

Ohio clean energy foe at the forefront of key points in bailout law and ratification efforts

House Majority Floor Leader Bill Seitz called the law at the heart of an alleged corruption case “the best energy bill we ever passed.”

This article provided by Eye on Ohio, the nonprofit, nonpartisan Ohio Center for Journalism in partnership with the nonprofit Energy News Network. Please join our free mailing list or the mailing list for the Energy New Network as this helps us provide more public service reporting. Documents made available last week show how House Majority Floor Leader Bill Seitz, R-Cincinnati, championed gutting Ohio’s clean energy standards in the state’s 2019 coal and nuclear bailout law. He has since served as a force against repeal. Claims in a federal complaint released in July indicate that the law was at the heart of an alleged corruption scheme involving roughly $60 million.

FirstEnergy faces another audit as advocates and others press for broader investigations

The order comes as newly released documents point to a larger role on legislative matters for the former utilities commission chair. This article provided by Eye on Ohio, the nonprofit, nonpartisan Ohio Center for Journalism in partnership with the nonprofit Energy News Network. Please join our free mailing list or the mailing list for the Energy New Network as this helps us provide more public service reporting. An upcoming audit could reveal whether FirstEnergy improperly used ratepayer money to funnel millions of dollars to an alleged unlawful conspiracy to pass and defend the state’s coal and nuclear bailout law. The Dec.

Top regulator’s exit raises questions about utility and fossil fuel influence

Critics question whether the former Ohio utility commission chair should have recused himself more often to avoid any appearance of bias. This article provided by Eye on Ohio, the nonprofit, nonpartisan Ohio Center for Journalism in partnership with the nonprofit Energy News Network. Please join our free mailing list or the mailing list for the Energy New Network as this helps us provide more public service reporting. Concerns about the outsized influence of utility and fossil fuel interests have resurfaced as the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio begins steps to name a new commissioner after the sudden exit of Chair Sam Randazzo.  

Randazzo resigned on Nov. 20 after an FBI team had searched his home and FirstEnergy released a mandatory quarterly report to the Securities and Exchange Commission.