CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The state Public Service Commission told two electric utilities this week that it will not rush to give final approval to an agreed-to settlement to purchase the Harrison Power Station near Shinnston in Harrison County.

Monongahela Power Company and Potomac Edison support Mon Power’s plan to fully own the large coal-fired power plant. The companies have previously said the purchase would provide their customers in West Virginia with the service capacity they need.

During a Sept. 13 hearing on the proposed settlement Mon Power asked the PSC to make its decision by Sept. 24 so the deal could be done by Oct. 1.  But in a Monday evening order, the PSC said that wouldn’t be possible.

(Read PSC order here)

“Because of the significance, complexity and number of the issues presented by this case,” the order said. 

The PSC went on to say it will issue the final order as soon as possible.

If approved, Mon Power will have clearance to buy the rest of the Harrison Power Station from Allegheny Energy Supply for $1.1 billion.

Mon Power spokesman Todd Meyers told MetroNews Tuesday the company understands the PSC delay.  

“The Harrison transaction is an extremely complicated issue and it is very understandable the commission requires more time to complete it,” Meyers said.

He added rate decreases would kick in for Mon Power and Potomac Edison customers as soon as the transaction is completed.

The PSC staff, state Consumer Advocate’s Office, West Virginia Sierra Club, labor groups and large power users have all signed off on the settlement. Groups that have raised questions about the transaction include West Virginia Citizen Action Group and the WV-AARP.

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