Duke Energy and North Carolina power regulators have proposed a settlement resolving an investigation into the abrupt ouster of former Progress Energy CEO Bill Johnson after the two utilities merged this summer.Johnson was chosen to lead the combined company during merger negotiations but was almost immediately replaced by Duke CEO Jim Rogers once the deal went through. As part of the settlement that will go before the North Carolina Utilities Commission next week, Rogers will retire when his contract expires at the end of 2013. According to a Duke release, provisions also include an agreement to maintain at least 1,000 employees in Raleigh, N.C., a guaranteed $25 million in additional fuel-related savings for North Carolina customers and $5 million in additional contributions toward low-income-assistance and workforce-development programs in the state.Rogers came to head the country's largest utility after a string of mergers dating back to the 1990s, when he was CEO of PSI Energy. When it merged with two other utilities to form Cinergy, he became its CEO. When Cinergy merged with Duke in 2006, he took the helm of the combined company.
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