AUSTIN, Texas, Oct. 26, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- The Public Utility Commission of Texas today approved with conditions Entergy Texas, Inc.'s proposal to join the Midwest Independent Transmission System Operator, Inc. (MISO), a large regional transmission organization, paving the way to nearly a quarter-billion-dollars in projected savings for customers over the next decade.
The decision gives approval with conditions to Entergy Texas' request to transfer functional control of its transmission facilities to MISO, a move expected to occur in December 2013.
"We are pleased with today's ruling from the Commission, approving the proposed settlement as supplemented at yesterday's open meeting," said Sallie Rainer, president and CEO of Entergy Texas, Inc. "The Commission's action today will allow Entergy Texas to move forward with its plans and preparations to join MISO, a move expected to bring substantial benefits to our customers."
In May 2011, Entergy Texas filed a report detailing the expected benefits of joining MISO and in April, filed its request to transfer functional control of its transmission system to that organization. The extensive analysis supporting the filing projected the move would save Entergy Texas electric customers $225 million on a net present value basis, based on a study period of 2013 to 2022. The transfer is also expected to improve reliability and provide for more competitive and diverse generation resources.
The settlement agreement was executed by the commission staff, Texas Industrial Energy Consumers, East Texas Electric Cooperatives, Southwestern Public Service Company, Entergy Texas, MISO and the Coalition of Entergy Cities. The settlement agreement was reviewed and recommended for approval by a panel of three administrative law judges October 1. At yesterday's open meeting, the commission supplemented the settlement with some additional conditions agreed upon by the signatories to the settlement.
MISO both operates a market for electricity and manages energy delivery across the vast transmission grid under its control. MISO facilitates the buying and selling of electricity, while continually balancing supply and demand, managing congestion on the transmission grid and creating an open, competitive market for industry participants. MISO is the nation's first regional transmission organization, and one of its largest.
"MISO's massive footprint, its preferred transmission cost allocation methodology and its proven experience in operating day-ahead and real-time regional energy markets are what make it a great fit for Entergy Texas," said Rainer. "Entry into MISO helps us prepare our power generation and delivery systems to meet the demands of a new century and maximize value for our customers."
The savings projected with MISO are largely attributable to its organized power markets, which allow for a more efficient commitment and dispatch of generating plants, to economies of scale offered by an RTO of MISO's size, and to MISO's transmission cost allocation methodology that equitably allocates the costs of transmission projects to those receiving the benefits from those projects. MISO currently operates across 11 states and one Canadian province. With the addition of the Entergy Operating Companies to its membership, MISO will stretch from Canada to the Gulf of Mexico.
Each of the six utility operating company subsidiaries of Entergy Corporation that do business in Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Texas, filed similar transfer of control requests with its respective regulator to join MISO. The Arkansas Public Service commission gave its approval with conditions today. In May, the Louisiana Public Service Commission gave its approval with conditions to the move to MISO for the Entergy utilities operating under its jurisdiction. A final order in Mississippi is expected within the next few weeks.
Entergy Texas, Inc. provides electricity to more than 400,000 customers in 27 counties. It is a subsidiary of Entergy Corporation. Entergy is an integrated energy company engaged primarily in electric power production and retail distribution operations. Entergy owns and operates power plants with approximately 30,000 megawatts of electric generating capacity, including more than 10,000 megawatts of nuclear power, making it one of the nation's leading nuclear generators. Entergy delivers electricity to 2.8 million utility customers in Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas.
Entergy's online address is entergytexas.com
In this news release, and from time to time, Entergy Texas, Inc. makes certain "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Except to the extent required by the federal securities laws, Entergy Texas undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, or otherwise.
Forward-looking statements involve a number of risks and uncertainties. There are factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied in the forward-looking statements, including (a) those factors discussed in: (i) Entergy Corporation's Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2011; and (ii) Entergy Corporation's other reports and filings made under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934; (b) uncertainties associated with rate proceedings, formula rate plans and other cost recovery mechanisms; (c) uncertainties associated with efforts to remediate the effects of major storms and recover related restoration costs; (d) nuclear plant relicensing, operating and regulatory risks, including any changes resulting from the nuclear crisis in Japan following its catastrophic earthquake and tsunami; (e) legislative and regulatory actions and risks and uncertainties associated with claims or litigation by or against Entergy Corporation and its subsidiaries; (f) conditions in commodity and capital markets during the periods covered by the forward-looking statements, in addition to other factors described elsewhere in this release and subsequent securities filings, and (g) risks inherent in the proposed spin-off and subsequent merger of Entergy Corporation's electric transmission business into a subsidiary of ITC Holdings Corp. Entergy Corporation cannot provide any assurances that the spin-off and merger transaction will be completed and cannot give any assurance as to the terms on which such transaction will be consummated. The spin-off and merger transaction is subject to certain conditions precedent, including regulatory approvals and approval by ITC Holdings Corp. shareholders.
SOURCE Entergy Corporation