Bribery and blackouts: Inside an Ohio utility's troubled past

 Erosion is visible in the 6-inch-thick carbon steel reactor head at FirstEnergy's Davis-Besse Nuclear Power Station in this 2002 photo from a Nuclear Regulatory Commission investigation.AKRON -- "For the third time in the past two decades, Ohio-based power company FirstEnergy Corp. faces official accusations of grave violations of the public trust.

Last month, the Justice Department implicated the company in funding what became a covert, $61 million lobbying and money-laundering conspiracy to win a state bailout of its money-losing nuclear plants in Ohio, according to a criminal indictment (Energywire, July 22). Ohio lawmaker Larry Householder (R) was ousted as House speaker late last month over his suspected role in the alleged "dark money" scheme paid for by FirstEnergy.

The allegations are again raising questions about FirstEnergy's ethical standards that recall the darkest chapters of the $16 billion company's history."

-- Peter Behr, E & E News

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