CALGARY, May 8, 2018 /CNW/ - Today, AltaGas Ltd. (AltaGas) (TSX:ALA) and WGL Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: WGL) (WGL) announced that they have signed a unanimous settlement agreement with the key stakeholders in the Washington, D.C. regulatory proceedings with respect to AltaGas' merger with WGL (the WGL Acquisition). Parties to the settlement include the Government of the District of Columbia, the Office of the People's Counsel, the Laborers' International Union of North America, its affiliated District Council, and Local Unions serving or located in Washington, D.C. (collectively, LiUNA), Local 2 of the Office and Professional Employees International Union, AFL-CIO, the United States Department of Defense, the National Consumer Law Center/National Housing Trust Housing Association of Nonprofit Developers/Maryland Affordable Housing Coalition (collectively NCLC), and the Apartment and Office Building Association of Metropolitan Washington.
Under the terms of the settlement agreement, AltaGas and WGL have committed approximately $41 million in direct benefits for the District of Columbia. These benefits include, $26 million in rate credits distributable among both residential and non-residential customers in the District of Columbia; $4.2 million for energy efficiency and energy conservation initiatives; $1.5 million to the Washington Area Fuel Fund, including at least $260,000 earmarked specifically for qualifying D.C. customers; and $6 million over a two-year period to promote local employment in the energy sector in the District of Columbia. The settlement also includes provisions to create jobs in the District of Columbia. The settlement agreement has been filed with the Public Service Commission of the District of Columbia (DC PSC) and full terms of the settlement will be available on DC PSC's website at https://www.dcpsc.org/.
"AltaGas is very pleased to be able to work collaboratively and successfully with all parties in the Washington, D.C. area," said David Harris, President and Chief Executive Officer of AltaGas. "This agreement meets our expectations and delivers tangible benefits to all parties, customers and the region. Together, AltaGas and WGL will be in an even stronger position to deliver exceptional service at affordable rates, more investment in the community, workforce training programs, more clean energy choices for customers, and good, secure jobs."
"For 170 years, we have dedicated ourselves to providing safe, reliable service to our customers in Washington, D.C. and our entire service territory. With today's settlement filing with the DC PSC, we once again reaffirm our commitment to the District as we outline the many ways the D.C. community will benefit from our combination with AltaGas," said Terry D. McCallister, Chairman and CEO of WGL, the parent company of Washington Gas. "Together, we'll be a stronger company, well-positioned to deliver outstanding benefits for our community for decades to come. We look forward to working with the Commission in order to complete our combination in the near future."
The Applicants have requested that the DC PSC establish a procedural schedule and timeline for its consideration of the settlement agreement and expect a ruling in that regard in the coming days. AltaGas continues to expect a mid-year 2018 close for the WGL Acquisition.
Learn more about the combination of AltaGas and WGL at www.wgldeliveringmore.com.
AltaGas is an energy infrastructure company with a focus on natural gas, power and regulated utilities. AltaGas creates value by acquiring, growing and optimizing its energy infrastructure, including a focus on clean energy sources. For more information visit: www.altagas.ca.
Headquartered in Washington, D.C., WGL is a leading source for clean, efficient and diverse energy solutions. With activities and assets across the U.S., WGL consists of Washington Gas, WGL Energy, WGL Midstream and Hampshire Gas. WGL provides natural gas, electricity, green power and energy services, including generation, storage, transportation, distribution, supply and efficiency. Our calling as a company is to make energy surprisingly easy for our employees, our community and all our customers. Whether you are a homeowner or renter, small business or multinational corporation, state and local or federal agency, WGL is here to provide Energy Answers. Ask Us. For more information, visit us at www.wgl.com.
This news release contains forward-looking information (forward-looking statements) within the meaning of applicable securities laws. Words such as "may", "can", "would", "could", "should", "will", "expect", "opportunity" and similar expressions suggesting future events or future performance, as they relate to AltaGas and WGL or any of their affiliates, are intended to identify forward-looking statements. Specifically, such forward-looking statements included in this release include, but are not limited to, statements with respect to the following: the expected delivery of the decision by the DC PSC; the expectation that the DC PSC will approve the settlement and the WGL Acquisition; the expected process to obtain DC PSC regulatory approval; the expected closing of the WGL Acquisition; and the expected benefits of the WGL Acquisition, including without limitation, benefits to WGL's local community and economy, growth opportunities, level of service, rates, workforce training, clean energy choices, employment opportunities, and strength of the combined company. These statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause actual results, events and achievements to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such statements. Such statements reflect the parties' current expectations, estimates and projections based on certain material factors and assumptions at the time the statement was made. These forward-looking statements are subject to certain risks and uncertainties which could cause results or events to differ from current expectations, including, without limitation: access to and use of capital markets; market value of the parties' securities; the parties' ability to pay dividends; the parties' ability to service or refinance their debt and manage their credit rating and risk; prevailing economic conditions; potential litigation; the parties' relationships with external stakeholders, including, in the case of AltaGas, Aboriginal stakeholders; the legislative and regulatory environment; underinsured losses; the parties' ability to economically and safely develop, contract and operate assets; the parties' ability to update infrastructure on a timely basis; AltaGas' dependence on certain partners; impacts of climate change and carbon taxing; effects of decommissioning, abandonment and reclamation costs; impact of labour relations and reliance on key personnel; cybersecurity risks; risks associated with the WGL Acquisition, the financing of the WGL Acquisition and the underlying business of WGL; and the other factors discussed under the heading "Risk Factors" in each of AltaGas' AIF for the year ended December 31, 2017 and WGL's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended September 30, 2017 and its Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.
Financial outlook information contained in this news release about prospective financial performance, financial position or cash flows is based on assumptions about future events, including economic conditions and proposed courses of action, based on the parties' assessment of the relevant information currently available. Readers are cautioned that such financial outlook information contained in this news release should not be used for purposes other than for which it is disclosed herein.
SOURCE AltaGas Ltd.
For further information: AltaGas Investment Community, 1-877-691-7199, Investor.firstname.lastname@example.org; AltaGas Media, 403-691-7197, email@example.com; WGL Financial Community, Douglas Bonawitz, 202-624-6129; WGL News Media, Brian Edwards, 202-624-6620