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Ohio Regulators’ Controversial $600 Million for FirstEnergy

Author(s): Dick Munson
Director, Midwest Clean Energy
Environmental Defense Fund
Date: October 31, 2016 at 12:00 PM

In a long-awaited decision, the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) approved a $600 million electricity rate plan for Ohio utilities provider, FirstEnergy. FirstEnergy has been struggling financially since a 2011 merger with Allegheny Energy. The utility paid a premium to acquire Allegheny’s coal dependency just as the cost of natural gas began its rapid decline. The PUCO decision was in response to FirstEnergy’s $4 billion bailout plan, which the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) rejected after determining the bailout equated to an illegal subsidy that distorted competitive electricity markets. In order to avoid FERC jurisdiction, FirstEnergy revised its bailout… [more]

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