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Ohio House Set To Vote On Subsidies For Nuclear Power Plants

The entrance to Energy Harbor's Davis-Besse Nuclear Power Station in Oak Harbor, Ohio.
Ron Schwane
Associated Press

The Ohio House will try again Tuesday to hold a vote on the sweeping energy bill which could bail out nuclear power plants and would end energy efficiency requirements for utilities.

The House experienced a false start last week when they had to hold off on the vote because potential supporters weren’t present.

House Speaker Larry Householder (R-Glenford) said he believes he has the votes to pass the energy bill and send it to the governor’s desk, but he was just one vote shy. There were four House members absent on the day of the vote that voted for the bill the last time it came to the floor. This most recent vote would be to concur with Senate changes.

“We’re gonna talk to those four legislators and find out where they’re at. I have not gotten any indication that they’re against it so I think those four votes will be enough to get it over the top,” Householder said.

The bill was approved in the Senate last week, but passed the House in May by only 10 votes. FirstEnergy Solutions, which owns the nuclear plants, plans to shut down the Davis-Besse plant this year unless lawmakers approve the subsidies.

The legislation would create an 85 cent monthly charge on electric bills but eliminate or reduce requirements to invest in renewable energy and energy efficiency programs. Lawmakers say that change will ultimately result in a rate reduction.

Andy Chow is a general assignment state government reporter who focuses on environmental, energy, agriculture, and education-related issues. He started his journalism career as an associate producer with ABC 6/FOX 28 in Columbus before becoming a producer with WBNS 10TV.