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AARP opposes First Energy request for subsidy

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Hume, Priscilla R

AARP Ohio opposes an unnecessary and costly First Energy proposal, now pending before the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO), which would force customers to subsidize some of its power plants through a surcharge on their electric bills. The added fee would cost customers an estimated $3 billion over the next 15 years.

“This is a bad deal for Ohio consumers,” said AARP staffer Bill Malcolm, who monitors utility issues in this region. “Worse, First Energy’s proposal is contrary to the Ohio law that opened markets to competition 15 years ago. First Energy already was paid for transitioning these plants to a deregulated market.”

First Energy’s proposal, if approved by the PUCO, would force its customers to buy power from the company’s Davis-Besse nuclear plant, its W.H. Sammis coal plant and from its share of power generated at another jointly-owned plant – even if they buy power from another power marketer.

“AARP Ohio is working to challenge this unjustified surcharge and ensure that First Energy receives only what is fair and reasonable,” Malcolm says. “We urge the Public Utilities Commission to reject this proposal.”

AARP Ohio volunteers who reside in the First Energy market will testify in opposition to this proposal at upcoming public hearings scheduled:

• Monday, January 12, 2015, at 6 p.m., at the Oliver R. Ocasek Government Center, 161 S. High Street, Akron, Ohio 44308.

• Thursday, January 15, 2015, at 6 p.m., at the Michael V. Disalle Government Center, County Commissioners Hearing Room, 1st Floor, 640 Jackson Street, Toledo, Ohio 43624.

• Tuesday, January 20, 2015, at 6 p.m., at Cleveland City Hall, Council Chambers, 2d Floor, Room 216, 601 Lakeside Avenue, Cleveland, Ohio 44114.

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