a settlement agreement, the merger will take place through a new parent holding company whose subsidiaries would include Brooklyn Union's corporate parent, KeySpan Energy Corp., and Long Island Lighting. The commission found that the agreement would enable both companies to "adapt to the emergence of competition" and will decrease consumers' electric bills. Case 97-m-0567, Feb. 5, 1998 (N.Y.P.S.C.).
STANDARD OFFER SERVICE. The Maine Public Utilities Commission has adopted rules for "standard offer service" for all customers when the state's electric market opens, under state law, beginning March 1, 2000. The SOS will resemble traditional bundled utility service, with a single bill for all service components and regulation of terms and conditions. The winner of a commission-sponsored competitive bidding process will provide the power to the standard offer group for each utility franchise area. The PUC said the SOS process should allow for a "smooth transition to a competitive environment." Docket No. 97-739, Feb. 11, 1998 (Me.P.U.C.).
APPLIANCE REPAIR. The New Jersey Board of Public Utilities
has upheld rates proposed by Public Service Electric and Gas Co. for competitive gas and electric appliance repair services, finding no cross-subsidy from ratepayers receiving regulated services, but has allowed the utility to update terms and conditions of service to address complaints by the Coalition for Fair Competition, a trade organization representing heating, cooling and appliance service contractors. Docket No. ec96070517, Jan. 23, 1998 (N.J.B.P.U.).
News digest is compiled by Lori A. Burkhart and Phillip S. Cross, contributing legal editors, and by Beth Lewis, editorial assistant.
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