Scandal rocks IURC, Duke

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share
Year In Review

An ethics scandal at the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission brought down its chairman along with two top Duke Energy executives and an IURC law judge-turned Duke employee who was at the center of the mess.

Scott Storms, the administrative law judge and chief counsel at the commission, last summer applied for a job as an attorney for Duke. Storms had helped administer a number of Duke cases pending before the commission, including the utility’s $2.9 billion coal gasification plant under construction in Edwardsport.

One of the Edwardsport plant’s strongest opponents, Citizens Action Coalition, questioned the integrity of Storms’ recent rulings regarding Duke. Gov. Mitch Daniels fired the chairman of the commission, David Lott Hardy, in October, after an internal review concluded Hardy allowed Storms to continue to work on Duke cases even as he jockeyed for a job with Duke.

The state ethics commission originally cleared Storms to take the job at Duke, but the commission later filed charges after additional information came to light, including e-mails indicating Hardy and Storms appeared to make light of ethics commission procedures. Hardy appeared to be helping Storms get hired at Duke.

“As to this ethics [sh--], we will get through it—hang in there,” Hardy told Storms in one e-mail.

North Carolina-based Duke placed Storms and its top Indiana executive, Mike Reed, on administrative leave and later fired both of them. More recently, Duke’s president of U.S. franchise gas and electric operations, Jim Turner, resigned, after e-mails surfaced suggesting that he and Hardy were chummy.

In recent weeks, groups concerned about Edwardsport’s spiraling cost overruns asked the commission to reopen a settlement agreement struck this year that would have capped costs of the plant. They say the agreement was tainted as it was negotiated under the leadership of Reed and Turner, citing the potential of undue influence.•


Post a comment to this story

We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in IBJ editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by

facebook - twitter on Facebook & Twitter

Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ on Facebook:
Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ's Tweets on these topics:
Subscribe to IBJ
  1. I am a Lyft driver who is a licensed CDL professional driver. ALL Lyft drivers take pride in providing quality service to the Indianapolis and surrounding areas, and we take the safety of our passengers and the public seriously.(passengers are required to put seat belts on when they get in our cars) We do go through background checks, driving records are checked as are the personal cars we drive, (these are OUR private cars we use) Unlike taxi cabs and their drivers Lyft (and yes Uber) provide passengers with a clean car inside and out, a friendly and courteous driver, and who is dressed appropriately and is groomed appropriately. I go so far as to offer mints, candy and/or small bottle of water to the my customers. It's a mutual respect between driver and passenger. With Best Regards

  2. to be the big fish in the little pond of IRL midwest racin' when yer up against Racin' Gardner

  3. In the first sentance "As a resident of one of these new Carmel Apartments the issue the local governments need to discuss are build quality & price." need a way to edit

  4. As a resident of one of these new Carmel Apartments the issue the local governments need to discuss is build quality & price. First none of these places is worth $1100 for a one bedroom. Downtown Carmel or Keystone at the Crossing in Indy. It doesn't matter. All require you to get in your car to get just about anywhere you need to go. I'm in one of the Carmel apartments now where after just 2.5 short years one of the kitchen cabinet doors is crooked and lawn and property maintenance seems to be lacking my old Indianapolis apartment which cost $300 less. This is one of the new star apartments. As they keep building throughout the area "deals" will start popping up creating shoppers. If your property is falling apart after year 3 what will it look like after year 5 or 10??? Why would one stay here if they could move to a new Broad Ripple in 2 to 3 years or another part of the Far Northside?? The complexes aren't going to let the "poor" move in without local permission so that's not that problem, but it the occupancy rate drops suddenly because the "Young" people moved back to Indy then look out.

  5. Why are you so concerned about Ace hardware? I don't understand why anyone goes there! Every time ive gone in the past, they don't have what I need and I end up going to the big box stores. I understand the service aspect and that they try to be helpful but if they are going to survive I think they might need to carry more specialty parts.