Ohio regulators launch probe into FirstEnergy's political and charitable contributions

COLUMBUS - "...Ohio lawmakers are grappling with how to repeal the bailout legislation, House Bill 6, and whether to replace it. New customer charges related to the legislation are set to begin the first of the year. Legislative hearings have already begun on competing bills with the hope that new legislation might be approved before the Nov. 3 elections.

The outlook for the bailout to survive remains sketchy as lawmakers, already nervous over public reaction to the revelations made by federal prosecutors, have learned that a proposal by regional grid operator PJM would, in effect, nullify the impact of any state subsidies to a power plant by taking them into account when setting the minimum price acceptable from them in future capacity market auctions.

Veteran utility lawyer, Samuel Randazzo, now the chairman of the PUCO, deflected questions during a legislative hearing this week from Democratic lawmakers wanting to know why the PUCO had to be prodded by the state's consumer advocate to launch its own investigation."

-- John Funk, Utility Dive

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