Ohio utilities to return 100% of tax savings to consumers


The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio has allowed FirstEnergy and its subsidiaries to return additional savings related to federal income tax law changes to customers.

This means a typical residential customer using 1,000HWh of electricity could see a reduction of over $4 in monthly bills.

The subsidiaries include Ohio Edison, Cleveland Electric Illuminating Company and Toledo Edison.

The approval includes a green light for First Energy to modernise its grid network by installing advanced automation equipment, real-time voltage controls and smart meters. 

The utility’s grid modernisation plans include:

  • Investing more than $500 million over three years
  • Installing 700,000 smart meters and the necessary supporting communications infrastructure and data management systems
  • Developing time-varying rates that give customers the opportunity to reduce their monthly electric bill by using energy during off-peak periods
  • Installing automated equipment on at least 200 distribution lines that can automatically isolate problems, prevent entire circuit lockouts, and quickly restore electric service to customers
  • Installing voltage regulating equipment on more than 200 circuits to provide energy efficiency benefits by reducing excessive voltage levels on the distribution grid.

Samuel L. Belcher, senior vice president and president of FirstEnergy Utilities, said: “We are pleased to resolve the tax reform issues and will pass along the tax savings to customers.

“We look forward to modernising our electric system with advanced equipment that will help reduce the number and duration of power outages. Smart meters also will allow our customers to make more informed decisions about their energy usage.”