May 18, 2017 - 5:28 PM EDT
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AARP Ohio Applauds House Decision to End FirstEnergy Nuclear Hearings

FirstEnergy Bailout Bill Nixed, Ohio Consumers Win

COLUMBUS, Ohio, May 18, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- The Ohio House Public Utilities Committee suspended further hearings for a proposed bill which would have allowed FirstEnergy and other utility companies to charge customers a special subsidy designed to offset costs associated with upgrading their outdated nuclear plants.

After hours of testimony, including AARP Ohio volunteer Earl Goldhammer, The Ohio House's Public Utilities Committee suspended further hearings on FirstEnergy’s nuclear subsidy proposal. The proposal would have allowed FirstEnergy to collect $5.25 billion from customers by adding a special fee to their utility bills over the next 16 years.

"On behalf of the 1.5 million AARP members across Ohio, and their families I want to extend my thanks to the Ohio House committee and members for recognizing the unfairness of this proposed bill and taking action to protect Ohio consumers from unnecessary and costly fees," said AARP Ohio's State Director, Barbara A. Sykes.

"The bill would have allowed FirstEnergy to unfairly transfer financial burdens from its outdated nuclear plants to customers. Customers would have felt the extra pinch in their wallets for the next 15 years. If FirstEnergy is unable to sell electricity from these plants at market rates, any resulting financial burdens should be borne by its shareholders and creditors who assumed the financial risks of investing in and lending money to FirstEnergy. Not their customers," added Earl Goldhammer, an AARP Ohio Volunteer.

AARP has been actively monitoring the use of surcharges and subsidies by utility companies in Ohio and other deregulated states and estimates that since 2000 Ohio utility companies have added $14.67 billion to consumer's bills.

For more information about AARP's work in states, go to

AARP is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization, with a membership of more than 37 million, that helps people turn their goals and dreams into real possibilities, strengthens communities and fights for the issues that matter most to families such as healthcare, employment and income security, retirement planning, affordable utilities and protection from financial abuse. We advocate for individuals in the marketplace by selecting products and services of high quality and value to carry the AARP name as well as help our members obtain discounts on a wide range of products, travel, and services. A trusted source for lifestyle tips, news and educational information, AARP produces AARP The Magazine, the world's largest circulation magazine; AARP Bulletin;; AARP TV & Radio; AARP Books; and AARP en Español, a Spanish-language website addressing the interests and needs of Hispanics. AARP does not endorse candidates for public office or make contributions to political campaigns or candidates. AARP Foundation is an affiliated charity of AARP that is working to win back opportunity for struggling Americans 50+ by being a force for change on the most serious issues they face today: housing, hunger, income and isolation. AARP has staffed offices in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Learn more at

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Source: PR Newswire (May 18, 2017 - 5:28 PM EDT)

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