August 1, 2008

Redbud Purchase Nears Last Hurdle

By Jack Money, The Oklahoman

Aug. 1--Plans by Oklahoma Gas and Electric Co. and its partners to buy the Redbud power plant near Luther are on their way to Oklahoma's Corporation Commission for a final hearing, utility officials said Thursday.

The Grand River Dam Authority and the Oklahoma Municipal Power Authority are joining with OG&E to buy the plant for $852 million.

State-regulated OG&E, which will own a 51 percent interest in the plant, is seeking Corporation Commission approval to recover from ratepayers its $434.5 million share of buying the plant.

The two authorities and Redbud Energy, a subsidiary of Columbia, Md., Kelson Holdings and current owner of the plant, have signed a joint stipulation and settlement agreement supporting OG&E's request.

Only AES Shady Point, an independent power producer that sells its electricity from a coal-fired plant in LeFlore County, refused to sign the agreement.

AES Shady Point also has a request before the commission, state officials said Thursday. It is asking the commission to authorize OG&E to recover costs from customers for improvements Shady Point might need to make to its plant to meet federal clean air standards.

An attorney for the company did not respond to a request for comment about its opposition to OG&E's plans to buy Redbud.

State officials said a hearing will be scheduled before the Corporation Commission on the joint stipulation and settlement agreement later this year.


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