Lawmakers Continue To Debate Utility Merger

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Vermont lawmakers continue to debate aspects of a proposed utility merger.

The debate is now bogging down talks on both the state budget at an energy bill.

Conferees on the spending plan for fiscal 2013 resolved the differences between the House and Senate over money issues yesterday evening, but remained divided over an amendment related to the merger that the Senate added to the bill last week.

At issue is a push by senators and some House members to get the two merging utilities, Central Vermont Public Service and Green Mountain Power, to repay $21 million to ratepayers. Those ratepayers were charged extra a decade ago to get CVPS out of financial trouble.

The Senate last night was debating adding a merger amendment to another bill.

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