Strickland Rolls Out New Energy Plan; Pushes Renewable Power

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - Protection for consumers and the development of alternative energy sources are at the heart of Governor Ted Strickland's long-awaited energy plan released Wednesday.

Strickland says state regulators must still sign off on any plans by electric utilities to change rates. That's been the procedure since the Legislature tried to bring competition to the industry beginning in 2001.

Competition hasn't developed, and utilities remain under a regulated structure until the end of next year.

What that means to customers' bills is not yet clear, although Strickland promises that stable prices remain a priority.

Strickland also wants a minimum of 25 percent of electricity sold in Ohio by 2025 to be generated by cleaner or renewable energy sources.