Ohio representatives discuss efforts to repeal House Bill 6, at center of House Speaker’s arrest

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Local lawmakers on Wednesday said their proposal would erase HB6 as if it never happened

WARREN, Ohio (WKBN) – Ohio House Speaker Larry Householder had no comment the day after his arrest for a $60 million bribery case. Prosecutors said the scheme he was involved in was centered on getting House Bill 6 passed.

Now, a number of state lawmakers say that should have never happened and they want it repealed.

“The only way to restore some type of confidence is to repeal this bill and look at it again,” said Sen. Sean O’Brien.

HB6 provided more than $1 billion in bailout money to the owners of both the Perry and Davis-Bessie nuclear power plants managed by FirstEnergy at the expense of gas-fired electricity generators like the one in Lordstown.

On Tuesday, federal prosecutors claimed Householder and others were part of the bribery scheme to get the measure passed.

Local lawmakers on Wednesday said their proposal would erase HB6 as if it never happened.

“And the consumers that were going to be paying 85 cents a month for the next seven years, that never existed,” said Rep. Mike O’Brien.

While Sen. O’Brien said he will introduce his bill on Thursday in the Senate, Republican lawmakers have repeal bills of their own, giving local leaders some confidence.

“To keep the bill where it’s at and the way it was achieved and went through is just wrong and I think Republicans recognize that,” said Sen. O’Brien.

Although Governor Mike DeWine said he does not support a repeal, local lawmakers think he can be convinced.

“Well, the governor was one of the first to see the handwriting in asking for the Speaker of the House to step down,” said Rep. O’Brien.

But Sen. O’Brien said the repeal issue is just what he calls the tip of the iceberg, claiming the laws covering campaign finances need to be reformed as well.

“Until you have that, we’re gonna continue to see problems like we’re seeing, and it’s Ohioans who are going to continue to suffer,” said Sen. O’Brien.

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