Chairman of panel nominating regulator’s replacement also has ties to FirstEnergy, nuclear bailout

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"The connections between a power company at the center of a massive scandal involving a nuclear bailout and the Ohio agency that’s supposed to regulate it increasingly appear to be deep. Consider:

On Jan. 31, 2019, Michael Koren chaired a meeting of the Public Utility Commission of Ohio’s Nominating Council, which recommends people for posts on the utility commission. Koren voted for Sam Randazzo, who with 11 votes from the 12-member council easily became one of four names the council recommended to incoming Gov. Mike DeWine. 

DeWine not only chose Randazzo to be a member of the commission, which has power over billions of dollars that Ohio ratepayers have to pay utilities, DeWine made Randazzo the chairman.

At the same time that he was recommending Randazzo, Koren was registered as a lobbyist for a large Ohio utility, Akron-based FirstEnergy, a firm Randazzo previously had consulting deals with. Specifically, in the first quarter of 2019, Koren had registered to lobby on behalf of House Bill 6, a $1.3 billion nuclear bailout that FirstEnergy was pushing, according to documents he filed with state regulators."

-- Marty Schladen, Ohio Capitol Journal

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