Ohio Democrats Seek Preservation of Records in Connection with FirstEnergy

Ohio Democratic Party (ODP) Chairwoman Elizabeth Walters last week filed a preliminary injunction seeking assurance that Gov. Mike DeWine (R) will preserve all records pertaining to House Bill 6 as an ODP lawsuit goes forward.

The legislation, which DeWine signed into law in July 2019, created a $1.3 billion bailout for the Perry and Davis-Besse nuclear-power plants operated by FirstEnergy Corp. Federal prosecutors have alleged that GOP former Ohio House Speaker Larry Householder and numerous other individuals, including erstwhile Ohio Republican Party Chairman Matt Borges, participated in a $61 million bribery scheme to effect the subsidies.

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Renacci Alleges DeWine Ignored Warnings of Corruption, Asks What Else Did He Know About the FirstEnergy Scandal

FirstEnergy building

In a Wednesday press release, a former U.S. Congressman and current gubernatorial candidate slammed incumbent Gov. Mike DeWine (R) for allegedly turning a blind eye to warning signs regarding the former chairman of the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) who was part of the FirstEnergy corruption scandal.

“Why did Mike DeWine ignore a 200-page warning about Sam Randazzo’s unethical behavior and appoint him to lead the Public Utilities Commission anyway?” said Jim Renacci in the release. “What else did DeWine know about FirstEnergy’s scandalous corruption? There are still several unanswered questions about this scheme that frauded Ohio taxpayers. With every new court filing, news report, or resignation, the FirstEnergy noose keeps tightening around Mike DeWine. Enough is enough: conservatives have a chance next month to vote for real accountable conservative leadership and put an end to Mike DeWine’s 40-year corrupt establishment career.”

The comments came on the heels of a news story published in The Ohio Capital Journal claiming that DeWine was in possession of a 198-page dossier “alleging Sam Randazzo – a lawyer and lobbyist who represented gas companies and industrial scale electricity buyers – used businesses registered in his name to ‘funnel’ money from FirstEnergy to buy real estate.”

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Ohio House Passes Bill Aimed at Nuclear Power Development

“In recent years, there has been a global shift in attitudes toward the development of new nuclear technologies to deploy scalable clean energy,” Rep. Dick Stein, R-Norwalk, said. “This legislation will bring Ohio to the forefront of advanced nuclear innovation and strengthen our domestic supply chains. This legislation is a proactive measure to tell the federal government Ohio is here to be a solution to find a clean, carbon-free energy source.”

The new authority, according to a news release, would be responsible for the development of advanced nuclear reactor commercialization, isotope production and nuclear waste reduction.

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Ohio Utility Lobbying Congress to Keep Russian Uranium Flowing for Nuclear Energy

After years of corrupt dealings between the Clinton family, the Biden family, and the administration of former President Barack Obama, all of which contributed to Russia’s near-total monopoly on uranium, one Ohio utility company needs to keep that Uranium flowing for its nuclear energy production. 

The National Energy Institute (NEI), a trade group of U.S. nuclear power generation companies including Duke Energy Corp … and Exelon Corp … is lobbying the White House to keep the exemption on uranium imports from Russia, the sources said, according to a report in Reuters.

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Audit Clears FirstEnergy of Misuse of Funds for Cleveland Stadium Naming Rights

FirstEnergy, the company at the heart of a $60 million bribery scheme that led to the indictment and ouster of Ohio’s House speaker, did not charge customers to fund stadium naming rights, according to a recent report by the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO).

The audit examined records for Cleveland Illuminating Co., Ohio Edison, Toledo Edison and FirstEnergy Corp., according to a news release, and confirmed no payments were booked into accounts held by FirstEnergy’s three Ohio utilities, meaning no costs were passed onto customers.

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Ohio Orders FirstEnergy to Return $27.5M to Customers

View of Columbus, Ohio, cityscape

FirstEnergy customers in Ohio will see nearly $30 million in refunds on their electric bills after the Public Utility of Commission of Ohio ordered the money returned.

The PUCO ordered implementation of the recently passed and signed House Bill 128, which was one of the many bills introduced this year in the Ohio General Assembly aimed at tackling the House Bill 6 scandal that led to the indictment and eventual removal from office of former House Speaker Larry Householder.

The bill, which became effective June 30, dealt with “decoupling,” which Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost has referred to as designed to allow FirstEnergy to overcharge customers.

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Report: Energy Company at Center of FBI Case Funneled $1 Million to DeWine Election Efforts

It’s been over seven months since the FBI announced a criminal complaint stemming from Ohio House Bill 6 (HB6). Arrests were made for what feds call a bribery and racketeering plan bankrolled by First Energy Solutions to elect state representatives and a House Speaker that would ensure the bill passed (and stopped efforts to repeal it) – giving a $1.3 billion bailout to two Ohio nuclear energy plants.
A new report lays out the $1M relationship between First Energy companies and Ohio Governor Mike DeWine’s campaign.

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Ohio Attorney General Announces Agreement to Stop Money Flowing from House Bill 6 to FirstEnergy

FirstEnergy has agreed to give up what could have been a $120 million windfall in 2021, and Ohio put on hold its ongoing lawsuit relating the state’s nuclear bailout law.

Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost announced Monday what he called a “big win” for state consumers when the energy company said it would forego a provision in the law that guaranteed FirstEnergy the ability to recapture yearly profits based on its profit numbers from 2018.

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Ohio Gov. DeWine Rejects Utility Commission Candidates

  COLUMBUS, Ohio – Ohio Governor Michael DeWine wrote a letter to the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) Nominating Commission Wednesday telling them to offer new candidates for the vacancy left by the resignation of former PUCO Chairman Samuel Randazzo. DeWine rejected the slate of four finalists screened by…

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Ohio Commission Wants Independent Audit of FirstEnergy

The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio again took aim at the company at the heart of the state’s controversial nuclear bailout bill.

The PUCO initiated an audit of FirstEnergy’s compliance with corporate separation laws and regulations. Already, the commission is investigating the company’s Ohio distribution utilities’ political and charitable spending.

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Timken, FirstEnergy Helped Householder Achieve His Dream of Regaining Position as Speaker

FirstEnergy donated generously to Mike DeWine, his son Patrick DeWine, Larry Householder, who wanted to become House speaker for the second time in his life, as well as the Ohio Republican Party, as our special series shows.

FirstEnergy, as well as Ohio Republican Party Chair Jane Timken, helped Householder achieve his dream in January 2019. His first time as speaker was 2001-2004.

Householder, according to a story by cleveland.com, recruited a group of candidates for the House’s 2018 election who would need his help to gain office, the newspaper said, citing a federal charging document.

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DeWine, Timken, Householder Learn the Art of Funneling Donations Through Ohio Republican Party

The Dayton Daily News in January 2014 reported on allegations of pay-to-play in Attorney General DeWine’s office concerning an advisory panel.

His calendar shows he met frequently with (now deceased) Alex Arshinkoff, a lobbyist and the chairman of Summit County Republican Party who represented four companies doing business with DeWine’s office.

DeWine was not the only Ohio Republican engaging in pay-to-play. Indeed, previous news reports and public records show the Ohio Republican Party funneled money to DeWine and now disgraced former House Speaker Larry Householder from such donors as FirstEnergy.

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Data Shows Long History of Pay-to-Play Among Ohio Republican Party, DeWine, Householder and FirstEnergy

Mike DeWine, as former Ohio attorney general, often awarded no-bid contracts to lawyers and collections agencies to do state work. Many of those chosen vendors also happened to be his campaign donors.

The Dayton Daily News in July 2014 reported on the connections between Attorney General DeWine’s awarding of collections contracts to vendors who also just happened to be campaign donors.

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Anti-Nuclear Bailout Group Cleared to Gather Signatures for Ballot Initiative

Ohioans Against Corporate Bailouts has been cleared to gather signatures for its ballot initiative to overturn about $1 billion worth of subsidies for nuclear energy after secretary of state certified the initial signatures for the petition language.

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Group Forms in Ohio to Prevent ‘Consumer-Funded Bailout’ of Nuclear Plants

  A new group calling itself the “Ohio Consumers Power Alliance” has formed in response to House Bill 6, a controversial piece of legislation that many consider being a bailout of FirstEnergy’s two Ohio-based nuclear plants. Under House Bill 6, the state would effectively subsidize the plants with taxpayer dollars…

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Two Ohio-Based Nuclear Power Plants Will Receive Bailouts Under Legislators’ New Plan

Ohio legislators revealed Monday their latest plan to save Ohio’s only two nuclear power plants from bankruptcy. As previously reported, FirstEnergy Solutions, a subsidiary of FirstEnergy that manages several power stations across the Midwest, announced that it was closing all three of the nuclear plants it owns and operates throughout the region. Two…

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National Energy Company, FirstEnergy, is Attempting to Stick Ohioans with Billion Dollar Cleanup Bill

Ohio Taxpayers could be stuck with a $1 billion nuclear cleanup bill if one national energy company has its way. The U.S Department of Justice, along with the “U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, the Office of the Ohio Attorney General, acting on behalf of the…

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