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Duke Energy, State Reach Settlement
Written by Rick Martinez   
Monday, 03 December 2012 18:40

(RALEIGH) - The North Carolina Utilities Commission and Attorney General Roy Cooper have signed off on an agreement that allow Duke Energy to proceed with its merger with Progress Energy.  The commission and AG's office opened investigations after former Progress Energy Chief Executive Officer Bill Johnson was fired after one day on the job as the new Duke CEO. The firing occurred on July 2, 2012.

Under the terms of the settlement:

- Duke will make several changes in its top management positions, including naming a new General Counsel and naming a former Progress executive as Executive Vice-President for Regulated Utilities. In addition, James E. Rogers will retire as CEO of Duke on December 31, 2013, as he originally planned to do in conjunction with the merger.

- Duke’s Board of Directors will create a CEO and Board Member Search Committee with a balanced number of former Duke and former Progress Board members, plus a new Board member not previously affiliated with either of the two companies. This search committee will identify candidates for the CEO and new Board member positions.

- Duke will create and maintain a new committee of its Board of Directors to meet with the Commission periodically to receive comments from the Commission on the activities and actions of the Duke Board.

- Duke will guarantee that Duke's North Carolina retail ratepayers will receive an additional $25 million in fuel and fuel-related cost savings over and above the amount that Duke is obligated to provide pursuant to the Commission’s Order approving the merger.

- Duke will contribute an additional $5 million to workforce development and low-income assistance in North Carolina over and above the amount that Duke is obligated to provide pursuant to the Commission’s Order approving the merger.

Duke agrees to base the President of Duke Energy North Carolina as well as the Senior Vice-President of Carolinas Delivery Operations, in Raleigh for at least five years. The utility also agreed to base 1,000 employees in Raleigh for the same time period.

“These settlements are positive for consumers and help to set right the problems surrounding the merger, " Cooper said in a statement. "As we continue our fight for lower rates in the Supreme Court and before the commission, these settlements will provide a framework for ensuring more complete and accurate information from Duke Energy in the future."

Last Updated on Thursday, 06 December 2012 00:01


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