July 30, 2014

Elyria
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State Supreme Court rules against Ohio homeowners over electric rates

CLEVELAND — The Ohio Supreme Court has ruled against homeowners still fighting with an electric utility over the end of deeply discounted rates.

The state’s high court on Wednesday dismissed consumer arguments that they have the right to sue FirstEnergy for fraud and a breach of contract because the utility had promised them lifetime discounts for switching to electric heating — then ended the program after 35 years.

The Plain Dealer reports that the justices determined the claim relates to electric rates, which is outside the purview of the high court.

The ruling sends the case to the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio, which has exclusive jurisdiction over utility rates. It has already ruled several times on the issue.

FirstEnergy has 2 million customers in Ohio.