Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost filed to block the payment of nuclear bailout money from House Bill (HB) 6.
HB 6, a bill that bailed out of the nuclear company First Energy, is at the center of the corruption scandal that led to the ousting and arrest of former Ohio Speaker of the House Larry Householder.
Yost said in a statement Wednesday that the lawsuit seeks to prevent a large portion of the $1.3 billion earmarked for HB 6 bailout fund from being given to First Energy’s post-bankruptcy successor Energy Harbor.
“We are seeking a court order to prevent that money from being distributed… it is essentially ill-gotten gains. Corrupt activities should not result in a monetary advantage for the people who acted corruptly.” Yost stated.
Yost also said “Ohio’s ability to governor itself” had been harmed, and that “Ohio citizens trust in their government to act in an ethical and honest manner has been eroded.”
AG Yost today announced the filing of litigation to block the payment of nuclear bailout money stemming from House Bill 6.
— Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost (@OhioAG) September 23, 2020
As well as seeking to prevent the payment of the bailout funds, the 43-page lawsuit seeks to stop First Energy, First Energy Service, First Energy Solutions, Energy Harbor, Householder, and nine others defendants from lobbying related to HB 6, and ban all parties from lobbying for 8 years.
The lawsuit echoes federal criminal complaints and alleges that the defendants formed an “Unholy Alliance,” that created a “Political Action Committee in disguise” and helped elect candidates on “Team Householder,” hand-picked allies of the now-former speaker to oust “incumbent representatives who were not supporters of Householder.” The suit goes on to claim that Team Householder and the “Unholy Alliance’s” lobbyists “bullied, intimidated, and coerced legislators into supporting Larry Householder and H.B. 6.”
The complaint states that the “public has a great interest in ensuring that any future legislation related to H.B. 6 is not tainted by the same or similar tactics which have already occurred.”
Yost noted that the suit is civil, not criminal, although it is connected to the existing federal charges. |
Householder has not made a statement on the lawsuit, and his Twitter has remained dormant since June, and First Energy has yet to comment.
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Ben Kolodny is a reporter for The Ohio Star and the Star News Network. You can follow Ben on Twitter. Tips can be sent to [email protected]
Background Photo “Miami Fort Power Station” by FunksBrother. CC BY-SA 4.0.