Ohioans with Medicare coverage have until the end of this week to shop for a new prescription drug insurance plan.
Ohio Department of Insurance officials are reminding Medicare beneficiaries that open enrollment ends on Friday. Any changes made to Medicare coverage will take effect Jan. 1.
The window is the only chance most beneficiaries have each year to find coverage or switch plans the government's program for seniors and the disabled.
The department's Ohio Senior Health Insurance Information Program is offering help to Medicare recipients on any changes. The program takes calls on weekdays from 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. at 1-800-686-1578.
Environmental activists and consumer advocates are breathing a sigh of relief. Ohio lawmakers apparently are NOT going to change the state’s energy efficiency program during the last days of the current legislative session.
The program requires electric companies to lower overall power usage by giving money to people and businesses that buy energy-saving appliances and equipment. To fund the program, all electricity customers pay a surcharge on their monthly electric bills.
The Northern Ohio utility giant, First Energy, has been pushing legislators to review the program with an eye toward dropping it, but spokesman Doug Colafella concedes no changes will happen, at least until a new legislature takes office in January.
Ohio consumer advocates and environmentalists have been worrying out loud that state legislators might water down or wipe out a 4-year old program that encourages electricity customers to be more energy-efficient. Now, as statehouse correspondent Bill Cohen reports --- some comments by the top man in the Ohio Senate show those activists have good REASON to worry.