End dirty subsidies

Former Ohio House Speaker Larry Householder and former GOP leader Matt Borges may have experienced the legal consequences of taking part in the largest public corruption case in state history, but part of the legislation that scheme launched is still costing Buckeye State taxpayers approximately $150 million per year, according to a study by the Ohio Manufacturers’ Association.

State Rep. Ron Ferguson, R-Wintersville, is among the lawmakers trying to do something about that, according to a report by News 5 Cleveland.

“The number one thing of Larry’s legacy, HB 6, continues to exist,” Ferguson told the station. “We shouldn’t be putting tax money into a pay-to-play scandal.”

Ohio Valley Electric Corp. still receives subsidies through the bailout, to keep afloat two 1950s-era coal plants — one in Cheshire, Ohio, but the other in Madison, Ind., according to News 5 Cleveland.

Yes, Indiana.

Ferguson, state Rep. Casey Weinstein, D-Hudson, and more than 30 other representatives have presented House Bill 120, which would stop ratepayers from funding the facilities — the last vestiges of Householder’s and Borges’ dirty work. So far, they have been stopped at every turn by House Speaker Jason Stephens, R-Kitts Hill, according to Ferguson.

One has to wonder why Stephens would not at least give lawmakers the opportunity to vote on the matter. His assertion has been that there are simply bigger issues to handle.

If supporters can get 50 members to force a vote on HB 120, it might not matter. Or, perhaps Stephens will be agreeable to taking another look. Either way, our elected officials owe it to us to make a decision on this matter.


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