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Rep. Smith: One year after enacting HB 6, Republicans continue to put profits over people

Calls out Republican leadership for refusing to repeal corrupt bailout bill
October 22, 2020
Democrat Newsroom

COLUMBUS – State Rep. Kent Smith (D-Euclid) today issued a statement on the one-year anniversary of the enactment of House Bill (HB) 6, the multi-billion corporate bailout bill at the center of an ongoing FBI criminal investigation into an alleged $60 million racketeering and bribery scheme led by former Republican Speaker Larry Householder. Former Speaker Larry Householder and several associates were arrested and indicted for their roles in the alleged corruption scheme.        

“Today marks the one-year anniversary of the tainted corporate bailout bill HB 6.  As a Member of the Ohio House Select Committee on Energy Policy and Oversight, the committee designated to repeal and replace HB 6, I am appalled by the lack of progress being made to repeal this legislation,” said Rep. Smith.

“HB 6 was an extremely complicated piece of energy legislation that gutted energy efficiency program and clean-energy requirements, all while making hard-working Ohioans pay more on their utility bills.

It is completely unacceptable that Republican majorities in both the House and Senate have dragged their feet and obstructed numerous Democratic efforts to immediately repeal legislation that was created as a result of the largest bribery and money laundering scheme in Ohio history.

HB 6 is the culmination of years of Republican corruption and unchecked power. Their inaction reveals their true motives of prioritizing special interests at the expense of taxpayers and hard-working Ohioans. 

The entire HB 6 legislative history lasted 101 days from introduction (April 12, 2019) to final legislative approval (July 23, 2019).  On Nov. 3, it will be 105 days since Householder was arrested by the FBI (July 21, 2020) for his role in the alleged corruption scheme.  The GOP will have had more time to consider the repeal than they took for the original legislation. 101 days of deception and backroom corruption followed by 105 days of inaction, delays and hypocrisy.

80% of Ohioans want HB 6 repealed, and a majority of both representatives and senators have signed on as co-sponsors to repeal the legislation. Republicans owe it to Ohioans to clean up their mess and repeal HB 6 now.”

For months, House Democrats have tried multiple times to repeal HB 6 but have been blocked by House Republicans at every turn.

Most recently, Republicans missed the deadline to repeal HB 6 by Oct. 1, the last day to pass a bill without an emergency clause to prevent the increased charges HB 6 adds to ratepayer utility bills beginning Jan. 1, 2021. The increased charges are expected to cost residential ratepayers over $50 million per year.