- March 2018: FirstEnergy Solutions announces closure of nuclear plants including Davis Besse and files for bankruptcy.
- January 2019: FirstEnergy gives $4.3 M to Sustainability Funding Alliance, a shadowy for-profit corporation run by Sam Randazzo, who was later appointed the Chair of the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO).
- April 2019: House Bill 6 was introduced to bail out two nuclear plants, paid for by utility ratepayers. That month, Sam Randazzo was also confirmed by the Ohio Senate as chair of the PUCO.
- May-July 2019: Ads from Generation Now—funded by FirstEnergy promoting House Bill 6 — appear on the television, social media, and in Ohioans’ mailboxes.
- May 2019: Ohio Senate passes House Bill 6 (19-12).
- July 2019: Ohio House passes House Bill 6 (53-43).
- July 2019: Public records from the Ohio Consumer Counsel revealed a text from the former FirstEnergy CEO Chuck Jones to the former Chair of the Public Utilities Commission Sam Randazzo. Mt. Rushmore has photoshopped faces of then-FirstEnergy lobbyist Ty Pine, former FirstEnergy VP Mike Dowling, Sam Randazzo, and Matt Evans, president of Boich Companies, “Company C” in the Householder corruption complaint. Gov. DeWine appointed Evans to serve as a trustee of Ohio University.
- August 2019: The Attorney General approved a referendum petition for a public vote to overturn House Bill 6. Ohioans for Energy Security launched a $1 million TV and radio ad campaign opposing the referendum on HB6. These ads were aggressive and xenophobic.
- September 2019: Tyler Fehrman, the campaign manager for the referendum on House Bill 6, wears a wire for the FBI during meetings with Matt Borges, an Ohio Republican operative and lobbyist. These recordings reveal that Borges was attempting to gain insider information about the referendum effort.
- October 2019: Pro-referendum campaign misses deadlines & the energy bailout bill (House Bill 6) goes into effect.
- November 2019: In a win for the utilities (but a loss for Ohio ratepayers) PUCO eliminates the requirement for a new rate case for FirstEnergy.
- January 2020: Jeff Longstreth, Larry Householder’s chief political aide and strategist, received $1M from Generation Now.
- February 2020: FirstEnergy Solutions announced it successfully restructured under Chapter 11 bankruptcy and that it is changing its name to Energy Harbor.
- July 21, 2020: Former Speaker of the Ohio House Larry Householder and his allies — Neil Clark, Matt Borges, Jeff Longstreth, and Juan Cespedes — are arrested. All of them, as well as Generation Now 501(c)(4) were charged with public corruption and racketeering. Not only was FirstEnergy not charged at this time, but it also simply appears as “Company A” in the complaint. The complaint lays out how dark money groups were used to benefit Householder politically and to garner a bailout.
- October 2020: Householder allies Longstreth & Cespedes’ guilty pleas unsealed. Longstreth admitted that he participated in the management of Generation Now, the nonprofit funded by FirstEnergy and that he “engaged in financial transactions that were designed to conceal the nature, source, ownership and control of payments.” Cespesdes admitted that he orchestrated payments to Generation Now and that he understood that the funds were meant to help Larry Householder achieve political goals and to help pass House Bill 6. Separately, FirstEnergy fired its CEO Chuck Jones and Vice President Mike Dowling.
- Nov. 16, 2020: The FBI raids Chair of the Public Utilities Commission Sam Randazzo’s house.
- Nov. 21, 2020: Sam Randazzo resigns as chair of the Public Utilities Commission.
- February 2021: Generation Now Pleads Guilty to federal racketeering. Householder’s chief political aide Jeff Longstreth signed the plea document.
- March 2021: Veteran lobbyist Neil Clark dies as a result of suicide. This month, Gov. DeWine also signs House Bill 128, which partially repeals House Bill 6. HB 128 doesn’t remove language in House Bill 6 that gutted the energy efficiency and renewable energy mandates or remove the subsidies for two coal plants owned by Ohio utility companies.
- April 2021: FirstEnergy begins talks about deferred prosecution.
- June 2021: The Ohio House expels Householder (75-21). American Electric Power (AEP) announces that the SEC has issued a subpoena about the role of a nonprofit affiliated with AEP, Empowering Ohio’s Economy which gave $150,000 to Generation Now. House Bill 6 includes a bailout of coal plants owned in part by AEP. AEP’s nonprofit also gave $200,000 to the Coalition for Opportunity & Growth. This appears to be the committee that spent $1 million in 2018 to candidates favored by Householder.
- July 2021: FirstEnergy reaches a deferred prosecution agreement and is fined $230 million. FirstEnergy admitted to conspiring “with public officials and other individuals and entities to pay millions of dollars to public officials in exchange for specific official action for FirstEnergy Corp.’s benefit.”
- March 2022: U.S. District Court Judge Timothy Black publishes schedule for Householder’s trial with jury selection on Jan. 20, 2023.
- October 2022: AEP receives a second subpoena from the U.S. Security and Exchange Commission.
- December 2022: FirstEnergy agrees to pay $3.9M for failing to tell the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission about payments to former PUCO Chairman Sam Randazzo and to Generation Now.
- Jan. 3, 2023: Judge Tim Black denies Larry Householder’s motion to dismiss.
- Jan. 4, 2023: Yost and other lawmakers subpoenaed as witnesses.
- Jan. 6, 2023: Prosecutors’ trial brief reveals that FirstEnergy gave $400K to two dark money nonprofits One Ohio United and Citizens for a Working America. These organizations than passed the money on to the Hardworking Americans PAC which targeted Larry Householder’s opponent in the 2018 Republican primary.
- Jan. 20, 2023: Jury selection begins.