DALLAS - The Louisiana State Bond Commission voted yesterday to involve its staff in the process of selecting underwriters for more than $1 billion in taxable utility hurricane recovery bonds to be issued by the Louisiana Public Finance Authority.

The authority will issue $721 million of bonds on behalf of Entergy Louisiana and $291 million for Entergy Gulf States by mid-year. The proceeds are to be used by the utilities to repair damages to the electric transmission and distribution systems in Louisiana from hurricanes Katrina and Rita in 2005, and to provide a reserve fund of $250 million to cover damages from future storms.

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