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Niagara Mohawk Merger with National Grid Completed

By Eileen Buckley

Buffalo, NY – Niagara Mohawk has officially merged with British-based National Grid, creating the eighth largest utility company in the United States.

Niagara Mohawk serves about a half-million customers in Western New York. Local Ni-Mo spokesman Steve Brady says the company will continue to be known as Niagara Mohawk in this region, but soon new logos will appear on utility trucks.

"What we hope the customers don't see is any confusion," Brady said. "That they will still call the same phone numbers, and the crews that respond to emergencies will still be the crews they are use to seeing. The trucks might look a little different and eventually the logos and colors on the bills might be a little different."

Brady says for area customers, this merger will mean about an eight percent reduction in the rate charged for delivery of electrical service.

"That was part of the merger agreement," he explained.

Brady says there are plans for overall work force reductions. The two companies employ 10,000 workers. Brady says the work force will be reduced to about 9,000. But for Western New York Ni-Mo employees, Brady says it's too soon to say how many jobs might be cut.

"The goal of National Grid and Niagara Mohawk management is that any reductions be done through a voluntary retirement program that has been offered," he said.

National Grid also owns four other utilities in New England. The $3 billion merger creates the largest network of transmitting and distributing electricity and utility services in New York and New England.