Entergy New Orleans floats plans to escape City Council oversight

Published: Sep. 21, 2021 at 11:31 AM CDT
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NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - Entergy has laid out four preliminary options for the future of its New Orleans subsidiary in response to the City Council, the company announced Tuesday.

All four of the plans will remove the utility company from beneath the City Council’s oversight.

Last Tuesday, Councilwoman Helena Moreno proposed a myriad of ways to hold Entergy more accountable, including investigating the extensive outages following Ida, filing formal regulatory complaints on the transmission failures, and creating a non-profit or city-owned power company to take away the company’s monopoly control.

“Several members of the council have expressed their intent to introduce and support a process that could potentially have another entity own and operate electric and gas service in the city,” Utility group president Rod West said, despite Entergy restoring power to the “overwhelming majority” of New Orleans within a week of Ida’s landfall.

The four options for consideration include; merging with Entergy Louisiana, selling Entergy New Orleans, establishing a spinoff company without Entergy’s ownership, or selling their equipment to the City.

Entergy notes the last option could result in higher costs and operational expenses for the City.

“It is obvious that we have reached a critical juncture in our relationship with the City Council,” said West.

Entergy and its predecessor have provided gas and electric services to the city of New Orleans for over 100 years.

A class-action lawsuit was filed Monday against the company, claiming it failed to properly maintain its infrastructure and facilities, causing “avoidable blackouts.”

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