Energy efficiency incentives could return under Ohio bill

Bribery Investigation Ohio

This April 4, 2017, file photo shows the entrance to FirstEnergy Corp.’s Davis-Besse Nuclear Power Station in Oak Harbor, Ohio. (AP Photo/Ron Schwane)

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — A bipartisan bill in the Ohio Legislature would once again allow power companies to offer energy efficiency programs such as smart thermostats or appliance rebates.

The legislation is sponsored by Rep. David Leland, a Columbus Democrat, and Rep. Bill Seitz, a Cincinnati Republican.

It’s aimed at undoing an element of a now-tainted nuclear power plant bailout bill at the heart of an alleged $60 million bribery scheme.

In addition to a massive ratepayer-funded bailout of the plants, the law also gutted state renewable energy standards and eliminated all energy efficiency programs.

Under the proposed bill, customers would cover the cost of reinstating energy efficiency programs, though some could opt out.

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