Politicians demand halt to proposed electric rate hike

Toledo-area consumers have paid some of the highest electricity rates in Ohio for long enough and consumers should demand a break, a Toledo City councilman and two Lucas County commissioners said yesterday.

Republican Councilman George Sarantou, who was flanked by Democratic commissioners Tina Skeldon Wozniak and Pete Gerken, urged residents to oppose a proposed electric rate plan, starting next year, for FirstEnergy Corp. during three public hearings during the next two weeks.

“The money that FirstEnergy is asking for comes directly from the pockets of seniors on a fixed income, working families, and taxpayers,” Mr. Sarantou said during a news conference.

He said the average cost for Toledo’s residential customers is $102.37 monthly, — greater than the $64.38 average in Canton, $81.53 in Columbus, and $84.30 in Cincinnati, according to a Public Utilities Commission of Ohio survey.

“FirstEnergy filed a comprehensive electric security plan with the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio that, if adopted, … would result in increases in total customer rates … averaging 5.32 percent in 2009, 4.01 percent in 2010, and 5.99 percent in 2011,” Mr. Sarantou said.

All hearings are held by the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio. The first will be 6:30 p.m. Oct. 1 in Sandusky, at Perkins High School auditorium, 3714 Campbell St.
The next two are on Oct. 2. The first is 12:30 p.m. in the downtown Government Center in Toledo, and the second is 6:30 p.m. in Maumee, at Gateway Middle School, 900 Gibbs St.


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...but not for a corporation to pass on the increased costs that they are experiencing on to their customers. Now before you get your dander up, I don't enjoy paying high utility costs, but I do realize that they are experiencing increased cost for transportation, etc like the rest of us are and need to cover those costs. I do want to know however where was this same concern by the above mentioned county commissioners when the line of agencies (COSI, etc) came with their hands out for tax money? That money also "comes directly from the pockets of seniors on a fixed income, working families, and taxpayers" Inquiring minds want to know.

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