OCC: FES "Required" To Notify PUCO Of "Intent" To File For Reorganization
In comments seeking to rebut FirstEnergy Solutions' objection (see story here) to the Ohio Consumer Counsel's petition for FES to make its customers aware of a potential bankruptcy filing (see story here), OCC made an argument that expands beyond the specifics of FES and implicates the obligations of all retail suppliers
OCC noted that FirstEnergy Solutions, as a retail supplier, "has a duty to continually notify the PUCO [Public Utilities Commission of Ohio] of material changes."
By rule, suppliers must notify PUCO of material changes in their license information within 30 days, and Ohio Adm. Code 4901:1-24-11(B)(6) defines material change to include the following: "The applicant or CRES provider has or intends to file for reorganization, protection from creditors, or any other form of bankruptcy with any court." [emphasis added]
As such, OCC said that, "FES [is] required to notify the PUCO if it intends to file for reorganization."
What constitutes such an intent is of interest to the market as a whole for compliance purposes
OCC alleged that, "the act of FES initiating discussions with creditors regarding structured settlement is a clear indication that FES intends to file for reorganization," and thus, in OCC's eyes, triggered the obligation to file a material change with PUCO