By Jamie Smith Hopkins, The Baltimore Sun
5:27 PM EDT, October 21, 2013
Exelon agreed to pay about $646,000 to settle a federal regulator's allegations that its Baltimore-based Constellation energy commodities group gave wrong information to a grid operator, an error the company called inadvertent.
The settlement, made public on Friday, includes a civil penalty of $500,000 and giving up $145,928 in "unjust profits," plus interest, according to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.
Lawrence McDonnell, a Constellation spokesman, said the settlement involved transactions in early 2010 that were "the result of Constellation's misunderstanding" of the California Independent System Operator's manual compared with its tariff.
"There are no allegations that Constellation intentionally entered into inappropriate transactions or entered into these transactions for any manipulative purpose," McDonnell said in an email.
But the energy regulatory commission said in its filing that Exelon "twice incorrectly asserted" that the grid operator favored closing the investigation without a fine. Exelon told the commission that the first statement was made in good faith and the second was an error.
"In light of these facts, we remind all subjects under investigation of the importance of candor and accuracy," the commission wrote.
The settlement pales compared with Constellation's $245 million fine and disgorgement last year to resolve the agency's allegations involving energy market manipulation. The amount was a record at the time.
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