Approval expected on $2 billion more in winter storm cost debts

Reasons You May Attend a Municipal Court Case - Anthony J. Cafaro, P.C. Sea Girt, NJ


While the Oklahoma Supreme Court is being asked to approve nearly $1 billion in bond securitization for Oklahoma Gas and Electric over the 2021 February winter storm, a state agency will meet Tuesday to consider $2.2 billion in winter storm bills from three more utilities.

The Oklahoma Development Finance Authority rescheduled its meeting following last week’s storms. On Tuesday, the board of bankers will meet at 10 a.m. to consider requests from Oklahoma Natural Gas, Public Service Company of Oklahoma and Summit Utilities Oklahoma.

The three are seeking approval of ratepayer-backed bonds to cover their Winter Storm Uri bills including $1.45 billion for ONG, $725 million for PSO and $95 million for Summit Utilities Oklahoma.

The request by OG&E covered more than $800 million in storm costs and rate-payer bonds. The ODFA, following the 2021 act that created the securitization process had to submit final approval from the state supreme Court. So  every securitization project must go through the justices.

But constitutional challenges have been filed by protesters who contend in some cases, the Oklahoma Corporation Commission did not follow the law in approving securitization or that the public was not allowed to vote on it.

Mike Davis, director of the ODFA expressed confidence last month the court will uphold the OG&E request to use the bonds to pay off the winter storm debt.


“I have every confidence that they will validate the bonds, and at that point in time we are moving forward with structuring the bonds, marketing the bonds and issuing the bonds,” said Mike Davis reported Non Doc.

He expressed concern at the time that continued delays in the securitization approval will result in “additional interest cost and additional cost for ratepayers.”

He said at the January meeting he had hopes of issuing the bonds in March, but March is here and the Supreme Court has yet to set a date to hear the case.