The D.C. Public Service Commission, a regulatory agency in charge of overseeing electric, natural gas and telephone companies, among others, rejected Exelon’s proposal to buy Pepco in a $6.6 billion bid on August 25.
After examining seven “public interest factors,” like the effect on ratepayers, competition in the market and the environment, the Commission concluded that, “taken as a whole, the transaction as proposed by Exelon and Pepco is not in the public interest.”
Mayor Muriel Bowser responded to the decision, saying, “I support the decision against the proposed merger. Moving forward, we want to ensure that DC utility ratepayers receive quality service, that we maintain and grow jobs in the District, and that we keep DC on our continued path toward sustainability.” The decision was also supported by POWER DC, a coalition formed against the merger.
Pepco and Exelon released a joint statement in response to the decision, saying, “We are disappointed with the Commission’s decision and believe it fails to recognize the benefits of the merger to the District of Columbia and its residents and businesses.” The release goes on to say that the two companies “continue to believe our proposal is in the public interest and provides direct immediate and long-term benefits to customers, enhances reliability and preserves our role as a community partner.” They said they “will review our options with respect to this decision” to figure out a path forward.