Successful prosecution of appeal to Supreme Court of Ohio against energy advisor

Bricker attorneys successfully prosecuted an appeal to the Supreme Court of Ohio against FirstEnergy Advisors. FirstEnergy Advisors is an affiliate of FirstEnergy Corp’s Ohio electric distribution utilities: Ohio Edison Company, The Cleveland Electric Illuminating Company and The Toledo Edison Company. In January 2020, FirstEnergy Advisors filed an application with the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (“PUCO”) to be certified as a competitive retail electric power broker and aggregator. Ohio’s electric utility corporate separation rules are meant to ensure that FirstEnergy Advisors does not gain a competitive advantage over other market participants by reason of its affiliation with the monopoly utilities. Bricker attorneys argued, on behalf of the Northeast Ohio Public Energy Council (“NOPEC”), that the PUCO unlawfully granted FirstEnergy Advisors authority to provide the requested services in this state. In a unanimous opinion issue October 14, 2021, the Supreme Court agreed, finding that the PUCO’s orders did not establish that FirstEnergy Advisors was fit and capable of providing service; or, that it was fit and capable of complying with the PUCO’s rules, including rules that require FirstEnergy Advisors to be structurally separated from its utility affiliates. The Supreme Court reversed the PUCO’s decision to certify FirstEnergy Advisors on the merits, and remanded the case for further proceedings. NOPEC is the largest public retail aggregation in Ohio serving about 1 million retail electric and natural gas customers in 244 member communities across 19 Ohio counties. For more, read the decision

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