By Julie Rose
The outspoken watchdog group NC WARN has begun a legal effort to have state regulators retract approval of the merger between Duke and Progress Energy.
The North Carolina Utilities Commission is already taking a second look at the Duke/ Progress merger in light of the company’s last-minute change of CEO.
But NC WARN would like the whole thing reopened, which would force Duke to justify the merger again, and give regulators the option of rejecting it.
NC WARN executive director Jim Warren maintains Duke Energy hid its plan to spend $2.2 billion upgrading Progress Energy’s nuclear plants. That’s money the company would look to recover from ratepayers.
“The billions in undisclosed rate hikes turns this merger into a net public soaking instead of the net public savings that is legally required of such a public merger,” says Warren.
The $2.2 billion Duke will spend over the next few years repairing and upgrading Progress nuclear plants was first reported last Friday in the Triangle Business Journal.