The Ohio Public Utilities Commission (PUC) has turned down a request by the City of Clyde to oust Toledo Edison Co. as a supplier of electric service for city residents in favor of municipal service. The PUC noted that the city should be able to find a less costly way to solve its safety and aesthetic concerns regarding the two sets of poles side by side in many parts of the city, a situation created when the city moved to reestablish municipal service in 1987 after having sold its municipal system to Toledo Edison in 1965.
Nevertheless, the PUC cautioned against giving too much weight to the "overwhelming" public sentiment against the city's application, pointing out that citizens could always take the matter "into their own hands through the municipal ballot box."
In denying the city's application, the PUC questioned effects on Toledo Edison customers outside of the city, who might absorb removal costs and stranded investment. It explained that a city's right to exercise its franchise power is not absolute, but must be tempered by overriding state concerns. Re City of Clyde, Case No. 95-02-EL-ABN, April 11, 1996 (Ohio P.U.C.).
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