Customer Choice in Indiana
No restructuring legislation was introduced in Indiana's 2001 General Assembly because of volatile -- and ongoing -- energy issues, including the California experience, high natural gas prices, low energy costs within the state, and a lack of public pressure on legislators to address this complicated issue.
A coalition of IOUs in Indiana -- AEP, Cinergy, Vectren (formerly Southern Indiana Gas and Electric), AES (formerly Indianapolis Power and Light), and NiSource (formerly Northern Indiana Public Service Company) -- engaged in discussions throughout 1999 and 2000, and had some success forging a compromise agreement. In fact, a number of other interested parties took part in the discussions and much progress was made. But they were not successful developing the broad base of support that a legislative restructuring proposal would need in order to have any reasonable hope of passage.
This year is the first year since 1997 that restructuring legislation has not been introduced. In both 1997 and 1998, a proposal was put forward by a coalition led by AEP, Cinergy, the Indiana Manufacturer's Association (IMA) and the Indiana Industrial Energy Consumers (INDIEC) - the organization representing large industrial customers in the state. In 1999 and 2000, Indiana's IOUs focused their efforts on forging a consensus package, while now-retired Sen. Morris Mills (R-Indianapolis) introduced deregulation bills on behalf of INDIEC. There was little legislative interest in either bill