Phillips Supports PUCO Rejection Of AEP Rate Hike

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American Electric Power will lower its rates after a ruling by the Public Utitlies Commission of Ohio yesterday.

The PUCO made the ruling after receiving hundreds of complaints from businesses about the increase.

Democratic State Representative Debbie Phillips says she thinks the decision is the right one.

"I understand the attempt to try to keep the rate costs lower for the industrial customers, which is very important for us keeping that manufacturing here in the Ohio River Valley, but the decision to spread those costs over the other business customers I think led to an unfair outcome and I'm glad to see the action the PUCO took today," says Phillips.

It is uncertain whether a future rate increase is inevitable.

Phillips says she hopes the PUCO will take a closer look at potential impacts before a new proposal comes forward.

She says there is something Athens business owners and community members can do.

"I would encourage people to stay involved. You can follow these cases on the PUCO's website. It's possible for anyone to give their input on a proposed plan. All of those letters that are received by the PUCO are docketed and included in the discussion as they move forward with any decisions," says Phillips.

Phillips says she hopes the lowering of rates will help business owners stay afloat financially and keep their doors open.

Phillips was a guest on WOUB's Newswatch last night.