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Duke agreed to pay if merger cost big customers

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RALEIGH, N.C. — Duke Energy said it agreed to reimburse some of its largest wholesale customers if they incurred costs related to the utility’s merger with rival Progress Energy.

The utility filed documents related to its merger side deals Friday with the North Carolina Utilities Commission.

The agreements focus on “hold harmless” provisions with wholesale customers for costs they incurred or could incur related to the merger, such as legal fees in negotiating the settlements.

The utility had argued the information about the side deals constituted trade secrets. But the commission ruled this month that the information had no commercial value and ordered the company to disclose them.

The commission is investigating Duke Energy’s decision to oust the company’s CEO in July, hours after the merger making it America’s largest electricity supplier.

Credit: The Associated Press.