Ohioans should not pay for research & development of FAILED nuclear technology

Ohio House Bill 434 has passed the House. Proponent testimony will be heard in the Senate Energy and Public Utilities Committee on Nov. 29, 2022.  It is likely that opposition testimony will be held the following Tuesday, Dec. 6, with a vote possible that day. HB 434 could open the State of Ohio to a lot of mischief.

Find your senator’s name and contact information using your address. Write one letter and use it SIX WAYS! Here’s how: write or phone to stop Ohio House Bill 434.

The Ohio Nuclear Free Network has created a 4-page flier with 28 concise points on why this bill is dangerous and precedent-setting. This article has highlights from the flier. A link to the flier is at the end of this article.  You can write a letter in your own words, copy and paste talking points from the flier, OR send the entire flier.

  • HB 434 would create a secretive new Ohio Authority that would dig into the Ohio treasury for unspecified amounts of money for an unspecified amount of time to support research and development of what is termed an “advanced” nuclear reactor.
  • A new State Authority in a bill only 14 pages long?  This is a dangerous precedent for setting up new Ohio Authorities and Agencies.
  • HB 434 is secretive because 6 of its 14 pages are about forming an in-house nominating committee, away from public input and oversight. The governor would be forced to choose the Board from among people submitted by this committee.
  • HB 434 is secretive because the new Authority would be under the auspices of the Dept. of Development, which writes contracts for Jobs Ohio. JobsOhio is beyond the reach of the Ohio Open Records Act, Ohio ethics laws, the Sunshine Act, the Ohio Administrative Procedure Act, and other accountability requirements.
  • What exactly is an Ohio Authority? Unlike traditional state agencies, many state authorities conduct business outside of typical accountability requirements for employment practices, contracts, procurement, and financial reporting. State authorities can issue bonds or dip into public treasuries.
  • Only 7 people testified in favor of HB 434 in the House, and 5 of those would potentially be direct beneficiaries of the bill. One small group from eGeneration and Elysium Industries is behind HB 434 and its previous incarnations HB104 and 771. Both bills copied directly from eGeneration’s website.
  • Wall Street won’t support nuclear power. Investment bank Lazard has a new report showing that the cost of new nuclear power is 4 to 5 times higher than wind and solar, which are ready to go now. And their fuel is free.  Cost estimates for building the NuScale Utah SMR have jumped from $58/MWh to as much as $100/MWh.
  • HB 434 does not mention jobs: Very few jobs would be created initially, and those would be for researchers.  The public does not pay for jobs or infrastructure of solar and wind development.
  • By defining its work as “research and development”, the Authority wouldn’t have to show useful results.
  • Remember Ohio House Bill 6, where the public was asked to bail out FirstEnergy/Energy Harbor’s failing nuclear plants. Ohioans don’t want to pay for more dangerous, expensive, failing nukes.

     See the Ohio Nuclear Free Network’s flier with 28 concise points on problems with HB 434.

     This bill is very much under the radar. Please write or call. Every voice is critical. THANK YOU!!!