Friday, February 3, 2012

Entergy Requests Legal Fees

A few minutes ago, I learned that Entergy had requested $4.6 million in legal fees from the state of Vermont.The state of Vermont knew this was coming. These are the legal fees for the Commerce Clause part of the lawsuit. In a front-page article by John Gregg in my local paper about a week ago, Attorney General Sorrell said it's also possible that the state of Vermont could be liable for Entergy's legal fees in arguing one part of the lawsuit that involved constitutional issues under the commerce clause, but that it was unclear whether Entergy would seek reimbursement.

In an article by Terri Hallenbeck of the Burlington Free Press earlier this week, she noted that Entergy had until the end of this week (that is, until today) to ask for reimbursement.

I figured Entergy would ask for reimbursement. As a business, if you can get reimbursement, you ask for it. That is especially true of public companies like Entergy. They could be sued by their stockholders for saying the equivalent of "Yeah, the State of Vermont owed us lots of money, but we thought we should be nicey-nicey and not collect." Why Sorrell even thought Entergy might not seek reimbursement is not clear to me. The state has lost other lawsuits, and the requests for reimbursements are still coming in, at the one and two million dollar level per party involved in the lawsuit, with no end in sight.

I can just imagine the number of newspaper articles that will come out of this, and the anger from people who oppose the plant. Well, those will be other stories, for other days.

That's the news for now!

Update: Rutland Herald article says judge's ruling includes that Vermont Yankee is owed legal fees. Here's a link to the ruling...I haven't looked for the "legal fees" statements yet.

Saturday AM Update. Excellent article in Vermont Digger about the fees. Sorrell is negotiating fees on other cases he has lost. Supreme Court has said that on Constitutional issues, legal fees are awarded to the winner, to be sure that all sorts of people can bring these cases.


Anonymous said...

I tried posting comments on those newspaper sites but they were not accepted. The browser just showed a turning wheel for like an hour. I tried to make the point that all the people complaining about Entergy going after them for legal fees really should take their complaints to their Governor and Legislature. They were the ones who overstepped their authority and tried to use unconstitutional and illegal means to roll a private company engaged in legal commerce. The law protects everybody, even those you don't like and whose busines you don't like.

Meredith Angwin said...

Thank you for this comment. I rarely go on the newspaper sites because it is so time-consuming. Unfortunately, this attitude of mine is shared by others, and that means the newspaper sites reflect a strongly opposed public. The strongly opposed people are very energized, active, etc. They take the time to post on the newspapers sites! I am always glad to hear of someone neutral or positive to nuclear energy who goes to the sites.

You made an excellent point! The government cannot arbitrarily shake down or close law-abiding businesses.