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APCo to acquire part of John E. Amos plant

Dec. 14, 2013 @ 12:00 AM

The West Virginia Public Service Commission issued an order Friday allowing Appalachian Power Co. to acquire two-thirds of the John E. Amos 3 generating unit, currently owned by Ohio Power Co.

In a statement issued Friday, the PSC stated there will be no impact on customer power rates because of the acquisition. It was deemed that Appalachian Power should be allowed to take over part of the plant due to a wattage deficit which kept the company from providing adequate service to its West Virginia customers, according to the statement.

Appalachian Power filed a petition for transfer of service last year.

In the same order, the PSC postponed ruling on a proposed merger of Wheeling Power with Appalachian Power, until both companies can show a long-term economic plan.

The PSC also declined to rule on Appalachian Power's proposal to acquire half of the Mitchell Power Plant in Viriginia, because the merger had already been denied by the Virginia State Corporation Commission.

United Bankshares receives merge approval

CHARLESTON -- United Bankshares Inc. and Virginia Commerce Bancorp Inc. have received Federal Reserve approval for the merger of Virginia Commerce with and into George Mason Bankshares Inc., a wholly-owned direct subsidiary of United.

United and Virginia Commerce previously received approval from the Virginia State Corporation Commission and the shareholders of each company. Officials hope to close the deal on Jan. 31, 2014.

Virginia Commerce and George Mason each have more than 20 locations in the northern Virginia area.

Board balks at mandating mine-safety device

FLATWOODS, W.Va. -- Members of a West Virginia board have decided to gather more industry and labor proposals on so-called proximity detectors before they require mine operators to install the equipment.

The Thursday meeting of the Board of Coal Mine Health and Safety was the fourth meeting in row that members could not agree on whether to mandate the devices, which are intended to curb crushing deaths and injuries in underground mines.

Instead, board voted to send the matter to a subcommittee to sort out industry and labor proposals. The subcommittee will meet Jan. 9.

The sidestep by the board is the latest the latest maneuver since a Charleston Gazette report in August that detailed the state's inaction on the issue.

Proximity detection systems are aimed at preventing a common mining accident.

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