Fortnightly Magazine - February 1 1995

Williams Moves into the Northeast

On December 12, the Williams Companies Inc. and Transco Energy Co. announced a cash tender offer by Williams to acquire up to 24.6 million shares, or 60 percent of Transco stock, for $17.50 per share. Combined with assumed debt and preferred shares, Williams' acquisition cost will total about $3 billion. Following completion of the tender offer, a newly formed subsidiary of Williams will be merged into Transco, with Transco continuing as a wholly-owned subsidiary of Williams. The boards of directors of both companies have unanimously approved the transaction.

Maine PUC Asserts Right to Review Utility EWG Investments

The Maine Public Utilities Commission (PUC) has rejected a settlement agreement that would have allowed Central Maine Power Co. to invest $30 million over the next three years in unspecified, unregulated power projects. The utility originally applied to create exempt wholesale generation (EWG) entities and related subsidiaries.

Cajun Files for Chapter 11

Succumbing to the pressure of its debts, the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) has halted construction on three nuclear power plants, the only remaining incomplete plants in the nation. According to chairman Craven Crowell, TVA can no longer foot the bill alone. So far, TVA has invested about $4.6 billion in two unfinished units at the Bellefonte Nuclear Plant in Alabama, and $1.7 billion in Watts Bar 2 in Tennessee. TVA estimates it will cost as much as $8.8 billion to finish all three units. (The Bellefonte units are 88 percent and 57 percent complete, respectively.

DSM Bidding Dispute Left to Utility

The Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission (UTC) has refused to mediate a dispute between Washington Water Power Co. and a bidder in the utility's 1991-92 resource procurement auction. The bidder, SESCO Inc., complained after the utility found its demand-side management (DSM) program proposal not cost-effective. The UTC said the decision to close the bidding and not pursue a contract with SESCO was a matter for review in the utility's next general rate case.

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