The N.C. Utilities Commission will begin hearing testimony in Duke Energy’s acquisition of Piedmont Natural Gas on July 18.
The $4.9 billion deal, for which Piedmont stockholders will get $60 a share, needs state approval in North Carolina and Tennessee. Piedmont would become a Duke subsidiary with its headquarters still in Charlotte.
A half-dozen consumers so far have written the commission to oppose the deal.
To help finance the purchase, Duke said this week it will offer 9.25 million shares of its stock at $72 a share in a sale to settle when the Piedmont acquisition closes. That is expected to be by the end of 2016.