Courtesy of reader and community contributor and citizen-activist Kevin Ellis of Louisville, the STARK COUNTY POLITICAL REPORT (The Report) has learned that the staff of the Ohio Public Utilities Commission (PUCO) are on the verge or raising electric rates of Stark Countians who are Ohio Power customers a whopping 11%, perhaps, as soon as January, 2009.
Ellis referred The Report to an article (dated 12/12/2008) by Business First Columbus (byline - Jeff Bell) which indicated that PUCO will not be in a position to rule on AEP's request for a 52%/62% (residential/business-industry) over the next three years until after January 14, 2009 because legal proceedings will remain open until that date.
The Report points out to readers that the opportunity for this sudden and draconian increase is a legacy of term-limited out Ohio Representative John P. Hagan (50th Ohio District located in Stark County). Republican Hagan, as a member of the Ohio General Assembly, has been chair of the House's Public Utilities Committee and a proponent of Senate Bill 221 which - now being the law of Ohio - allows for the interim rate increase action.
Hagan, who recently lost his bid to continue as an elected official, is said to be depressed by is loss to Democrat Pete Ferguson.
One has to wonder if Hagan can now relate to the loss and concomitant depression that users of Ohio Power are likely to experience in the near future when reality sets with the receipt of dramatically higher electric bills?