Utilities

Crews face deadline on central Indiana wind farm project

November 30, 2012
Associated Press
Construction crews are hustling to beat a Dec. 31 deadline to get 125 turbines in operation for a wind farm that is eventually planned to reach into four central Indiana counties.
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Authorities seek cause, assess damages of fatal explosion

November 12, 2012
 IBJ Staff and Associated Press
Indianapolis Deputy Code Enforcement Director Adam Collins said 80 homes were damaged in the Richmond Hill neighborhood, including 31 houses that might need to be demolished. He estimated the damage at $3.6 million.
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Out-of-the-way telecom company to branch into IndyRestricted Content

November 10, 2012
Chris O'Malley
Smithville Telephone, headquartered in Ellettsville, near Bloomington, is the state’s largest independently owned phone company. Its Smithville Digital division, which provides fiber-optic communications to businesses, hospitals and schools in 17 Indiana counties, mostly in the south, has quietly been growing on the periphery of Indianapolis.
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Duke Energy earnings hurt by mild weather

November 8, 2012
Associated Press
Duke Energy Corp., the nation's largest electric utility by market value, reported stronger-than-expected earnings for the third quarter, but company executives said the outlook for strong economic growth in the U.S. is dim.
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Westfield votes to approve $91M water utility sale

November 5, 2012
 IBJ Staff
The Westfield City Council voted 6-1 Monday night to transfer its water and wastewater assets to Citizens Energy Group for $91 million.
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Dry cleaners' solvents taint Martinsville's waterRestricted Content

November 3, 2012
Chris O'Malley
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recently proposed placing the city of Martinsville on its Superfund priority list, citing groundwater contamination traced to several former dry cleaning shops in the heart of town.
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Backers of 30-year gas-purchase deal to press on

October 30, 2012
Associated Press
The Indiana Finance Authority and Indiana Gasification LLC plan to amend a 30-year contract that obligates the state to buy the company's synthetic natural gas. The move is in reaction to an appeals court ruling that reversed regulators' approval of the deal.
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Communications firm Metronet plants flag in Indy areaRestricted Content

October 13, 2012
 IBJ Staff
The Evansville company plans to install more than 200 miles of fiber-optic lines in Franklin.
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Citizens' Westfield utility acquisition will help with broader system needsRestricted Content

October 6, 2012
Chris O'Malley
The $91 million water and sewer deal is expected to improve water distribution between northeast and northwest suburbs.
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Chrysler drives off with $2.5M refund from Duke Energy

October 5, 2012
Chris O'Malley
The automaker had claimed in a complaint to the state that Duke acted in "draconian" fashion by holding onto the seven-figure deposit for service at its Kokomo plant since 2009.
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Vectren agrees to settlement in Indiana gas explosion

September 25, 2012
Associated Press
Vectren Corp. has agreed to pay $75,000 in penalties and take other steps in response to a natural gas explosion that destroyed a southern Indiana home and injured five people.
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Citizens agrees to buy Westfield utilities for $91M

September 24, 2012
The proposed sale to Citizens Energy Group would include Westfield's water and wastewater utilities. Citizens bought water utilities from the city of Indianapolis last year for $1.9 billion.
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Citizens Energy to roll out combined billsRestricted Content

September 22, 2012
Gas, water and sewer charges will be consolidated into one mailing to reap savings promised in merger of gas, water utilities.
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Indiana's wind power industry faces unclear future

September 17, 2012
Associated Press
Indiana's once-promising wind-power industry is facing an uncertain future as Congress debates whether to renew a tax credit that's set to expire by the end of the year.
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Mayor lifts city’s water-use restrictions

September 4, 2012
Beginning Wednesday, city residents can water their lawns, wash their cars and fill swimming pools without facing fines. Fishers also lifted its conservation order, effective Saturday.
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Water utility eyes rate hikes to promote conservation

August 31, 2012
Chris O'Malley
Citizens Water is considering changes in the way it bills customers to conserve water during future droughts. Among the changes could be periodic rate hikes to discourage heavy usage on peak days.
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Utilities to get bill for damaged grid-control room

August 27, 2012
 IBJ Staff
A Carmel not-for-profit that monitors the electric grid in 11 states and part of Canada plans to pass on to its member utilities and transmission-line operators $5.4 million in costs resulting from damage to its local data center last September.
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Toyota, Duke to test electric-vehicle technology in Indiana

August 22, 2012
Chris O'Malley
Toyota Motor Corp. will test and refine electric-vehicle-charging technology in the Indianapolis area under a partnership with Duke Energy Corp. announced Wednesday morning.
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Transmission line would bring more wind power to Indiana

August 17, 2012
Chris O'Malley
Indiana electric utilities choking on federal environmental rules that threaten their coal and oil-powered generating stations might be able to tap wind power generated in the plains states starting in 2017.
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Regulators order Duke, Progress to disclose deals

August 15, 2012
Associated Press
North Carolina utilities regulators have ordered Duke Energy and Progress Energy to detail some of the deals they cut with major customers before their merger earlier this year.
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Entergy faces hurdle to joining transmission pact

August 13, 2012
Associated Press
Arkansas regulators want guarantees that their authority will be preserved if Entergy Corp.'s utilities join Carmel-based regional transmission group MISO, raising questions about whether the deal will go through.
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Indianapolis airport power contract up for bidRestricted Content

August 11, 2012
Proposals from firms seeking to manage and operate Indianapolis International Airport’s central energy plant must be received by 2 p.m. Sept. 5.
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$14M legal tab touches off new skirmish in Duke caseRestricted Content

August 4, 2012
Chris O'Malley
Citizens Action Coalition, Sierra Club, Save the Valley and Valley Watch are hoping questions over legal fees the utility agreed to pay attorneys for industrial customers scuttle a deal over cost overruns at the $3.3 billion Edwardsport coal gasification plant.
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Duke Energy earnings creep up on higher rates

August 2, 2012
Associated Press
Duke Energy Corp.’s earnings rose 2 percent in the second quarter on higher electric rates, but newly acquired subsidiary Progress Energy saw earnings plummet as a result of planned nuclear plant outages.
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N.C. regulators hire law firm to probe Duke Energy

August 1, 2012
Associated Press
North Carolina utilities regulators said Wednesday they have hired a former federal prosecutor with experience digging into corporate affairs to reveal whether regulators were misled ahead of a takeover that created America's largest electric company.
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  1. By Mr. Lee's own admission, he basically ran pro-bono ads on the billboard. Paying advertisers didn't want ads on a controversial, ugly billboard that turned off customers. At least one of Mr. Lee's free advertisers dropped out early because they found that Mr. Lee's advertising was having negative impact. So Mr. Lee is disingenous to say the city now owes him for lost revenue. Mr. Lee quickly realized his monstrosity had a dim future and is trying to get the city to bail him out. And that's why the billboard came down so quickly.

  2. Merchants Square is back. The small strip center to the south of 116th is 100% leased, McAlister’s is doing well in the outlot building. The former O’Charleys is leased but is going through permitting with the State and the town of Carmel. Mac Grill is closing all of their Indy locations (not just Merchants) and this will allow for a new restaurant concept to backfill both of their locations. As for the north side of 116th a new dinner movie theater and brewery is under construction to fill most of the vacancy left by Hobby Lobby and Old Navy.

  3. Yes it does have an ethics commission which enforce the law which prohibits 12 specific items. google it

  4. Thanks for reading and replying. If you want to see the differentiation for research, speaking and consulting, check out the spreadsheet I linked to at the bottom of the post; it is broken out exactly that way. I can only include so much detail in a blog post before it becomes something other than a blog post.

  5. 1. There is no allegation of corruption, Marty, to imply otherwise if false. 2. Is the "State Rule" a law? I suspect not. 3. Is Mr. Woodruff obligated via an employment agreement (contractual obligation) to not work with the engineering firm? 4. In many states a right to earn a living will trump non-competes and other contractual obligations, does Mr. Woodruff's personal right to earn a living trump any contractual obligations that might or might not be out there. 5. Lawyers in state government routinely go work for law firms they were formally working with in their regulatory actions. You can see a steady stream to firms like B&D from state government. It would be interesting for IBJ to do a review of current lawyers and find out how their past decisions affected the law firms clients. Since there is a buffer between regulated company and the regulator working for a law firm technically is not in violation of ethics but you have to wonder if decisions were made in favor of certain firms and quid pro quo jobs resulted. Start with the DOI in this review. Very interesting.

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