Eramet / Freeze on Clean Energy

Ohio Senate Bill 310 would allow unchecked authority to the utilities: Jereme Kent

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COLUMBUS — “In 2013, [Senator Bill] Seitz introduced a similar bill, Senate Bill 58. That bill was the second-most-lobbied bill in the Senate last year. It was the subject of testimony over three months and ultimately was defeated. You could have been for or against S.B. 58, but you would have to agree there was rigorous debate and the bill was thoroughly considered.

Somehow, just a few months later, Senate Bill 310 is different. This bill is on track to be considered for committee approval as early as next week, and then forwarded to the full Senate for the almost automatic vote of approval.

What’s different?

Maybe it is the $2 million the utilities have donated to legislators since 2008. Maybe it is because this is an election year and the GOP is afraid of having a real conversation about Ohio’s electricity bill. Or maybe it is just because the rumor is true that someone called Senate President Keith Faber a RINO (Republican in name only) for not stopping a local wind farm that a few dozen people objected to.

The bottom line is that S.B. 310 will affect the life of every single Ohioan who pays a power bill. It will restore unchecked authority to the utilities, and it will allow the utilities to go back to doing nothing about the billions of dollars of wasted electricity each year, other than passing the costs on to the rest of us.”

— Jereme Kent, guest columnist, Cleveland Plain Dealer

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