Ohio AG files suit to stop FirstEnergy, others from receiving payments from House Bill 6

The suit also seeks damages from the defendants, including former House Speaker Larry Householder
Published: Sep. 23, 2020 at 2:37 PM EDT
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COLUMBUS, Ohio (WTVG) - Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost has filed a civil suit to stop payments from taxpayers going to certain businesses as a result of the scandal surrounding House Bill 6. Yost announced the suit in a press conference Wednesday afternoon.

The suit is filed against FirstEnergy (and subsidiaries), Energy Harbor, former Speaker of the House Larry Householder, and several organizations and entities associated with Householder. Those groups include Generation Now, the fund that Householder allegedly used to accept millions in bribes from the energy companies in support of the bill.

The attorney general is asking the court to issue orders that would, among other things, stop any business or entity named in the suit from receiving funds collected in utility surcharges as part of House Bill 6. The suit also seeks to bar any named entity, most notably Householder, from holding public office or from serving on any political campaign, Political Action Committee, or in any government position or board and would bar them from any lobbying activities for eight years. Finally, the suit seeks compensatory, punitive, and treble damages from the defendants.

In July, Householder and four others were arrested and charged with racketeering in connection to their role in the passage of House Bill 6. Householder is accused of accepting bribes in the form of millions of dollars in contributions to a 501(c)(4) organization, sometimes referred to as a dark money fund, to support the bill in the Ohio General Assembly and to squash legislation that opposed it.

House Bill 6 is a FirstEnergy nuclear bailout bill for Ohio’s two nuclear power plants, including Davis-Besse. It adds a new fee to all electricity bills and directs more than $150 million annually for the next six years to the plants. Lawmakers in Ohio are now debating whether to repeal the law in light of the allegations against Householder.

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