Illinois and Ohio Bribery Scandals Show the Perils of Mixing Utilities and Politics
Both laws subvert the market, which is unfair to competing owners of power plants, said Michael Haugh, an energy policy consultant who has done work for the Office of the Ohio Consumers’ Counsel, the state’s utility consumer advocate, and for the R Street Institute, a think tank that advocates for open markets and limited government.
The result is that utilities have a system in which they can earn substantial profits in situations where they are well-equipped to compete, and can get government protection to guarantee profits when they are ill-equipped to compete.
“They found the way to walk the line in-between,” Haugh said, which, he added, is “the best of both worlds” for the companies.
Image credit: S.Borisov