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PSC sets conditions for Entergy's asset transfer to MISO.

The Arkansas Public Service Commission has set stipulations that Entergy Arkansas Inc. would need to meet in order to transfer its transmission assets to the Midwest independent Transmission System Operator Inc. (MISO) of Carmel, Ind.

An Entergy news release noted that some of the conditions "are of concern to the company," but both Entergy and MISO are still focused on the transfer.

"There was always an understanding that there would be a number of conditions that would have to be met," said Allen Gordon, a former Arkansas state senator who represents MISO in the state. "In fact, several things raised in this order are things that have already been agreed to. So this is a matter of documentation of things that are already in play, but there are some questions about exactly how the governance will operate going forward."

"We are going to get this right and make it work," Hugh McDonald, president and CEO of Entergy Arkansas, said in the release. "We have worked hard to reach this point and demonstrate that membership in MISO is in the best interests of our customers, our communities and our state."

The PSC's conditions include that Entergy Arkansas must remain separate from other coops, remain under PSC jurisdiction, seek PSC approval if it decides to leave MISO, and seek PSC approval if it decides to make changes to its transmission service for retail ratemaking.

Entergy Corp. announced in April 2011 that its operating units--Entergy Arkansas, Entergy Gulf States Louisiana, Entergy Louisiana, Entergy Mississippi, Entergy New Orleans and Entergy Texas--would join MISO, with a target joining date of December 2013.

MISO is an independent, nonprofit, regional transmission organization that supports the delivery of electricity in 13 U.S. states. Entergy chose to join MISO over Southwest Power Pool of Little Rock.

Entergy claims the merger would save Arkansans $263 million in net present value between 2013 and 2022, as well as improve reliability and provide for "more competitive and diverse generation resources."
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Title Annotation:Energy
Author:Jones, Luke
Publication:Arkansas Business
Date:Aug 13, 2012
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