Reporter's notebook

One week at a time When Perkins Township police Lt. A.L. Matthews isn't fighting crime, he's drawing
Sandusky Register Staff
May 24, 2010

One week at a time

When Perkins Township police Lt. A.L. Matthews isn't fighting crime, he's drawing up X's and O's as the head coach of the Perkins eighth-grade football team.

So far, so good in the 2008 campaign for Matthews' gridiron gladiators.

Thursday night the team improved to 4-0 with a 30-6 win over St. Mary CC.

Matthews is in his second year as head coach of the team and has coached for 10 years.

Asked if his team could run the table -- that's go undefeated for those of you not into sports writing jargon -- Matthews would not answer.

"I don't want to jinx it," Matthews said. "We take it one week at a time."

Harvest festival takes a hiatus

Port Clinton community members should have celebrated their annual Harvest Festival this weekend, but cider and pumpkins were nowhere to be found. Staff at the Port Clinton Chamber of Commerce said the event was canceled this year because the organizational board was too small to make it happen.

The ladies at the chamber assured me the festival board had reorganized, but not in time for the event. They said if all goes well, the Harvest Festival will be back next fall.

-- Sarah Weber

Electric proposals could come with hidden costs

During a seminar Tuesday detailing the proposed electric company rate increases, the Ohio Consumers' Counsel briefly mentioned deferred costs. Simply put, this is money that may be charged to the consumer at a later time to compensate for increases in generation, transmission and distribution of electricity.

What they didn't mention was that First Energy could defer the real costs and add that cost onto customer's bill in 2013 -- when the company is able to file again with the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio to raise rates.

But, as Serving Our Seniors Executive Director Sue Daugherty pointed out, FirstEnergy would be borrowing more money to meet its costs if it isn't billing the customer for these increases.

In 2012, First Energy can take the cost of the loan, raise the interest cost and bill the customer for it.

This is known in electric company lingo as a "carrying charge," but it basically amounts to interest.

"Not only do they get to slap it on our bill later, they get to make money off of 'deferring' the charges we should have inurred in 2009, 2010 and 2011," Daugherty said.

Sounds like consumers should brace themselves for another jolt.

-- Annie Zelm