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Lawsuit: Ohio Attorney General sues to stop nuclear bailout money, and break up dark money groups

Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost sues to block nuclear bailout money from being paid, The lawsuit also seeks to dissolve the dark money groups involved in the bribery scheme.  Author: WKYC Staff, Associated Press, 10TV Web Staff,  September 23, 2020

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost filed a lawsuit on Wednesday to block the state’s nuclear plants from collecting fees on electricity bills that were authorized in a new law at the center of a $60 million federal bribery probe involving the former speaker of the Ohio House.

The suit was filed in Franklin County Court in Columbus against Energy Harbor, asking the judge to block payments to the company’s two nuclear plants near Cleveland and Toledo that were bailed out through the now-tainted legislation.

Energy Harbor is the former FirstEnergy Solutions, a onetime subsidiary of FirstEnergy Corp. The subsidiary filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in 2018 amid a mounting load brought on by the rise of competition from natural gas power in the East and Midwest.

HB 6, a roughly $1 billion financial bailout, was signed into law in July 2019. It added a new fee to every electricity bill in the state and directed over $150 million a year through 2026 to the plants in Lake and Ottawa counties. The fee will be added to every electricity bill in the state starting January 1.

Federal prosecutors allege that from March 2017 to March 2020, former Ohio House Speaker Larry Householder and others received millions of dollars in exchange for help in passing HB 6.

Wednesday’s lawsuit came hours after a House committee looking at repealing the law heard varying proponent testimony from energy lobbying groups and state office representing consumers. Governor Mike DeWine has said he supports a repeal of the law.

Yost had previously promised he would take the legal remedies necessary if the General Assembly could not do so in time.

The lawsuit also seeks to freeze the assets of former House Speaker Larry Householder’s $1 million campaign fund and dissolve the dark money groups involved in the bribery scheme, Yost said.

“Corruption like this doesn’t happen without cash, lots of cash,” he said.

Federal prosecutors in July accused Householder and four others of shepherding energy company money for personal and political use as part of an effort to pass the legislation, then kill any attempt to repeal it at the polls. All five men have pleaded not guilty……….

September 24, 2020 - Posted by | Legal, secrets,lies and civil liberties, USA

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