Fortnightly Magazine - December 1996

Majority Whip Introduces Restructuring Bill

Signaling the direction he believes the 105th Congress should take, Rep. Tom DeLay

(R-TX) on the last day of the 104th Congress introduced legislation, H.R. 4297, "The Consumers Electric Power Act," to bring competition to the nation's electric industry.

Nevada Plans for Electric Bypass

As part of its ongoing investigation of electric industry restructuring, the Nevada Public Service Commission (PSC) has issued a report and solicited comment on appropriate regulatory response to customer bypass requests.

IRS Eyes Taxes in Debt - Equity Swaps

According to Chadbourne & Park, LLP, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is auditing U.S. companies that bought shares in foreign utilities in recent privatizations to determine whether they should have paid U.S. taxes.

All of the transactions involve debt-equity swaps, which can take many forms. For example, a U.S. company interested in buying shares in a foreign utility first goes into the market to buy bonds of the foreign government.

Telco Must Slash ISDN Rates

The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) has decided that Bell Atlantic-Pennsylvania, Inc., a local-exchange telephone carrier (LEC), should reduce rates for its residential digital high-speed service offerings. The residential Integrated Service Digital Network (ISDN) service enables users to access and send voice, data, and imaging services at the same time over their telephone lines.