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Ohio House Public Utilities Committee suspends further hearings on FirstEnergy’s special nuclear customer charges

FirstEnergy nuclear hearings suspended in Ohio House, Cleveland.com  By John Funk, The Plain 
 May 17, 2017  CLEVELAND, Ohio — The chairman of the Ohio House Public Utilities Committee has suspended further hearings — and a vote — on a proposed bill allowing FirstEnergy to create a special customer charge to subsidize its nuclear power plant fleet.

“We have heard over 10 hours of testimony on this bill [House Bill 178]. I have given proponents and opponents a chance to make their case,” said William Seitz, a Cincinnati Republican who chairs the committee.

“I am not sensing a keen desire on the part of the House members to vote on this and doubt that we will have more hearings in the near future unless something cataclysmic should happen.”

Cataclysmic events might include a decision by FirstEnergy Solutions to seek bankruptcy protection from its creditors or a decision by the company to immediately close its four nuclear power plants.

FirstEnergy Solutions, the unregulated subsidiary of FirstEnergy, is legally the owner of all of the company’s power plants. FirstEnergy Solutions has been operating with junk bond ratings for some time.

Its parent has tried to distance itself from the company, even creating a separate board of directors, which includes two FirstEnergy employees. But FirstEnergy recently had to guarantee a cash settlement between FirstEnergy Solutions and several railroad companies claiming breach of contract when FirstEnergy Solutions closed coal-fired power plants along Lake Erie and declined further deliveries…….http://www.cleveland.com/business/index.ssf/2017/05/firstenergy_nuclear_hearings_s.html

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May 19, 2017 - Posted by | business and costs, politics, USA

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