CenterPoint Energy reports third quarter 2017 earnings of $0.39 per diluted share; $0.38 per diluted share on a guidance basis

CenterPoint Energy anticipates achieving at or near the high end of the $1.25 - $1.33 guidance range for 2017; Company continues to target upper end of 4-6% year-over-year earnings growth range for 2018

Houston - Nov. 3, 2017 - CenterPoint Energy, Inc. (NYSE: CNP) today reported net income of $169 million, or $0.39 per diluted share, for the third quarter of 2017, compared with net income of $179 million, or $0.41 per diluted share for the same period of the prior year. On a guidance basis, third quarter 2017 earnings were $0.38 per diluted share, consisting of $0.28 from utility operations and $0.10 from midstream investments. Third quarter 2016 earnings on a guidance basis were $0.41 per diluted share, consisting of $0.31 from utility operations and $0.10 from midstream investments. 

Operating income for the third quarter of 2017 was $279 million, compared with $284 million in the third quarter of the prior year. Equity income from midstream investments was $68 million for the third quarter of 2017, compared with $73 million for the third quarter of the prior year.

"We had a solid third quarter, putting us on track to deliver at or near the high end of our full year guidance range," said Scott M. Prochazka, president and chief executive officer of CenterPoint Energy. "Our ongoing focus on reliability and resilience enabled our system to perform well in the face of Hurricane Harvey."

Business Segments

Electric Transmission & Distribution

The electric transmission & distribution segment reported operating income of $247 million for the third quarter of 2017, consisting of $229 million from the regulated electric transmission & distribution utility operations (TDU) and $18 million related to securitization bonds. Operating income for the third quarter of 2016 was $257 million, consisting of $234 million from the TDU and $23 million related to securitization bonds.

Operating income for the TDU benefited primarily from rate relief and customer growth. These benefits were more than offset by lower usage largely due to a return to more normal weather, lower equity return and lower miscellaneous revenues, including right of way. 

Natural Gas Distribution

The natural gas distribution segment reported operating income of $19 million for the third quarter of 2017, compared with $22 million for the same period of 2016. Operating income benefited primarily from rate relief and customer growth.  These benefits were more than offset by higher depreciation and amortization expense, lower usage primarily due to the timing of a decoupling normalization adjustment and higher operations and maintenance expenses. 

Energy Services

The energy services segment reported operating income of $7 million for the third quarter of 2017, which included a mark-to-market gain of $2 million. In comparison, operating income for the same period in 2016 was $5 million, which included a mark-to-market loss of $2 million.  Excluding mark-to-market adjustments, operating income was $5 million for the third quarter of 2017 compared with $7 million for the same period in 2016.  The $2 million decrease in operating income was primarily due to expenses related to the acquisition and integration of Atmos Energy Marketing.

Midstream Investments

The midstream investments segment reported $68 million of equity income for the third quarter of 2017, compared with $73 million in the third quarter of the prior year. 

Earnings Outlook

On a consolidated basis, CenterPoint Energy anticipates earnings at or near the high end of its 2017 guidance range of $1.25 - $1.33 per diluted share. 

The utility operations guidance range considers performance to date and certain significant variables that may impact earnings, such as weather, regulatory and judicial proceedings, throughput, commodity prices, effective tax rates, and financing activities.

In providing this guidance, the company uses a non-GAAP measure of adjusted diluted earnings per share that does not consider other potential impacts, such as changes in accounting standards or unusual items, earnings or losses from the change in the value of the ZENS securities and the related stocks, or the timing effects of mark-to-market accounting in the company's Energy Services business. 

In providing guidance for midstream investments, the company assumes ownership of 54.1 percent of the common units representing limited partner interests in Enable Midstream and includes the amortization of CenterPoint Energy's basis differential in Enable Midstream. CenterPoint Energy's guidance takes into account such factors as Enable Midstream's most recent public outlook for 2017 dated Nov. 1, 2017, and effective tax rates. The company does not include other potential impacts, such as any changes in accounting standards or Enable Midstream's unusual items. 

Filing of Form 10-Q for CenterPoint Energy, Inc.

Today, CenterPoint Energy, Inc. filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) its Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the period ended Sept. 30, 2017. A copy of that report is available on the company's website, under the Investors section. Other filings the company makes with the SEC and certain documents relating to its corporate governance can also be found under the Investors section.

Webcast of Earnings Conference Call

CenterPoint Energy's management will host an earnings conference call on Friday, Nov. 3, 2017, at 10:00 a.m. Central time/11:00 a.m. Eastern time. Interested parties may listen to a live audio broadcast of the conference call on the company's website under the Investors section. A replay of the call can be accessed approximately two hours after the completion of the call and will be archived on the website for at least one year.

 

CenterPoint Energy, Inc., headquartered in Houston, Texas, is a domestic energy delivery company that includes electric transmission & distribution, natural gas distribution and energy services operations. The company serves more than five million metered customers primarily in Arkansas, Louisiana, Minnesota, Mississippi, Oklahoma, and Texas. The company also owns 54.1 percent of the common units representing limited partner interests in Enable Midstream Partners, a publicly traded master limited partnership it jointly controls with OGE Energy Corp., which owns, operates and develops natural gas and crude oil infrastructure assets. With more than 7,700 employees, CenterPoint Energy and its predecessor companies have been in business for more than 150 years. For more information, please visit www.CenterPointEnergy.com.

 

This news release includes forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements are based upon assumptions of management which are believed to be reasonable at the time made and are subject to significant risks and uncertainties. You are cautioned not to place undue reliance on any forward-looking statements. Actual events and results may differ materially from those expressed or implied by these forward-looking statements. Any statements in this news release regarding future earnings, and future financial performance and results of operations, including, but not limited to earnings guidance, targeted dividend growth rate and any other statements that are not historical facts are forward-looking statements. Each forward-looking statement contained in this news release speaks only as of the date of this release. Factors that could affect actual results include (1) the performance of Enable Midstream Partners, LP (Enable), the amount of cash distributions CenterPoint Energy receives from Enable, Enable's ability to redeem the Series A Preferred Units in certain circumstances and the value of CenterPoint Energy's interest in Enable, and factors that may have a material impact on such performance, cash distributions and value, including factors such as: (A) competitive conditions in the midstream industry, and actions taken by Enable's customers and competitors, including the extent and timing of the entry of additional competition in the markets served by Enable; (B) the timing and extent of changes in the supply of natural gas and associated commodity prices, particularly prices of natural gas and natural gas liquids (NGLs), the competitive effects of the available pipeline capacity in the regions served by Enable, and the effects of geographic and seasonal commodity price differentials, including the effects of these circumstances on re-contracting available capacity on Enable's interstate pipelines; (C) the demand for crude oil, natural gas, NGLs and transportation and storage services; (D) environmental and other governmental regulations, including the availability of drilling permits and the regulation of hydraulic fracturing; (E) recording of non-cash goodwill, long-lived asset or other than temporary impairment charges by or related to Enable; (F) changes in tax status; (G) access to debt and equity capital; and (H) the availability and prices of raw materials and services for current and future construction projects; (2) industrial, commercial and residential growth in CenterPoint Energy's service territories and changes in market demand, including the effects of energy efficiency measures and demographic patterns; (3) timely and appropriate rate actions that allow recovery of costs and a reasonable return on investment; (4) future economic conditions in regional and national markets and their effect on sales, prices and costs; (5) weather variations and other natural phenomena, including the impact of severe weather events on operations and capital; (6) state and federal legislative and regulatory actions or developments affecting various aspects of CenterPoint Energy's and Enable's businesses, including, among others, energy deregulation or re-regulation, pipeline integrity and safety and changes in regulation and legislation pertaining to trade, health care, finance and actions regarding the rates charged by our regulated businesses; (7) tax reform and legislation; (8) CenterPoint Energy's ability to mitigate weather impacts through normalization or rate mechanisms, and the effectiveness of such mechanisms; (9) the timing and extent of changes in commodity prices, particularly natural gas, and the effects of geographic and seasonal commodity price differentials; (10) problems with regulatory approval, construction, implementation of necessary technology or other issues with respect to major capital projects that result in delays or in cost overruns that cannot be recouped in rates; (11) local, state and federal legislative and regulatory actions or developments relating to the environment, including those related to global climate change; (12) the impact of unplanned facility outages; (13) any direct or indirect effects on CenterPoint Energy's facilities, operations and financial condition resulting from terrorism, cyber-attacks, data security breaches or other attempts to disrupt CenterPoint Energy's businesses or the businesses of third parties, or other catastrophic events such as fires, earthquakes, explosions, leaks, floods, droughts, hurricanes, pandemic health events or other occurrences; (14) CenterPoint Energy's ability to invest planned capital and the timely recovery of CenterPoint Energy's investment in capital; (15) CenterPoint Energy's ability to control operation and maintenance costs; (16) actions by credit rating agencies; (17) the sufficiency of CenterPoint Energy's insurance coverage, including availability, cost, coverage and terms; (18) the investment performance of CenterPoint Energy's pension and postretirement benefit plans; (19) commercial bank and financial market conditions, CenterPoint Energy's access to capital, the cost of such capital, and the results of CenterPoint Energy's financing and refinancing efforts, including availability of funds in the debt capital markets; (20) changes in interest rates or rates of inflation; (21) inability of various counterparties to meet their obligations to CenterPoint Energy; (22) non-payment for CenterPoint Energy's services due to financial distress of its customers; (23) the extent and effectiveness of CenterPoint Energy's risk management and hedging activities, including, but not limited to, its financial hedges and weather hedges; (24) timely and appropriate regulatory actions allowing securitization or other recovery of costs associated with Hurricane Harvey and any future hurricanes or natural disasters; (25) CenterPoint Energy's or Enable's potential business strategies and strategic initiatives, including restructurings, joint ventures and acquisitions or dispositions of assets or businesses (including a reduction of CenterPoint Energy's interests in Enable, whether through its election to sell the common units it owns in the public equity markets or otherwise, subject to certain limitations), which CenterPoint Energy cannot assure will be completed or will have the anticipated benefits to it or Enable; (26) acquisition and merger activities involving CenterPoint Energy or its competitors; (27) CenterPoint Energy's or Enable's ability to recruit, effectively transition and retain management and key employees and maintain good labor relations; (28) the ability of GenOn Energy, Inc. (formerly known as RRI Energy, Inc., Reliant Energy and RRI), a wholly-owned subsidiary of NRG Energy, Inc. (NRG), and its subsidiaries, currently the subject of bankruptcy proceedings, to satisfy their obligations to CenterPoint Energy, including indemnity obligations; (29) the outcome of litigation; (30) the ability of retail electric providers (REPs), including REP affiliates of NRG and Vistra Energy Corp., formerly known as TCEH Corp., to satisfy their obligations to CenterPoint Energy and its subsidiaries; (31) changes in technology, particularly with respect to efficient battery storage or the emergence or growth of new, developing or alternative sources of generation; (32) the timing and outcome of any audits, disputes and other proceedings related to taxes; (33) the effective tax rates; (34) the effect of changes in and application of accounting standards and pronouncements; and (35) other factors discussed in CenterPoint Energy's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended Dec. 31, 2016, as well as in CenterPoint Energy's Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the quarter ended March 31, 2017, June 30, 2017 and September 30, 2017 and other reports CenterPoint Energy or its subsidiaries may file from time to time with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Use of Non-GAAP Financial Measures by CenterPoint Energy in Providing Guidance

In addition to presenting its financial results in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP), including presentation of net income and diluted earnings per share, CenterPoint Energy also provides guidance based on adjusted net income and adjusted diluted earnings per share, which are non-GAAP financial measures. Generally, a non-GAAP financial measure is a numerical measure of a company's historical or future financial performance that excludes or includes amounts that are not normally excluded or included in the most directly comparable GAAP financial measure. CenterPoint Energy's adjusted net income and adjusted diluted earnings per share calculation excludes from net income and diluted earnings per share, respectively, the impact of ZENS and related securities and mark-to-market gains or losses resulting from the company's Energy Services business.  CenterPoint Energy is unable to present a quantitative reconciliation of forward looking adjusted net income and adjusted diluted earnings per share because changes in the value of ZENS and related securities and mark-to-market gains or losses resulting from the company's Energy Services business are not estimable.

Management evaluates the company's financial performance in part based on adjusted net income and adjusted diluted earnings per share.  We believe that presenting these non-GAAP financial measures enhances an investor's understanding of CenterPoint Energy's overall financial performance by providing them with an additional meaningful and relevant comparison of current and anticipated future results across periods.  The adjustments made in these non-GAAP financial measures exclude items that Management believes does not most accurately reflect the company's fundamental business performance.  These excluded items are reflected in the reconciliation tables of this news release, where applicable. CenterPoint Energy's adjusted net income and adjusted diluted earnings per share non-GAAP financial measures should be considered as a supplement to, and not as a substitute for, or superior to, net income and diluted earnings per share, which respectively are the most directly comparable GAAP financial measures.  These non-GAAP financial measures also may be different than non-GAAP financial measures used by other companies.

 

2017-11-03T05:00:00Z
CenterPoint Energy declares $0.2675 quarterly dividend

Houston – Oct. 25, 2017 - CenterPoint Energy, Inc.'s. (NYSE: CNP) board of directors today declared a regular quarterly cash dividend of $0.2675 per share of common stock payable on Dec. 8, 2017, to shareholders of record as of the close of business on Nov. 16, 2017.

CenterPoint Energy, Inc., headquartered in Houston, Texas, is a domestic energy delivery company that includes electric transmission & distribution, natural gas distribution and energy services operations. The company serves more than five million metered customers primarily in Arkansas, Louisiana, Minnesota, Mississippi, Oklahoma, and Texas. The company also owns 54.1 percent of the common units representing limited partner interests in Enable Midstream Partners, a publicly traded master limited partnership it jointly controls with OGE Energy Corp., which owns, operates and develops natural gas and crude oil infrastructure assets. With more than 7,700 employees, CenterPoint Energy and its predecessor companies have been in business for more than 150 years. For more information, please visit www.CenterPointEnergy.com.

2017-10-25T21:25:00Z
Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton proclaims October as HVAC System Awareness Month

Minneapolis Oct. 25, 2017Governor Mark Dayton has issued a proclamation announcing October as Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning (HVAC) System Awareness Month in Minnesota. The proclamation is the initiative of the Minnesota Blue Flame Natural Gas Association, which consists of member utilities and companies that promote the safe, efficient use and value of natural gas and natural gas equipment, as well as encourage energy efficiency and energy conservation. This marks the second HVAC System Awareness Month, which is designed to highlight the benefits of annual maintenance.

The proclamation urges Minnesota residents to have a qualified technician perform an annual inspection of their HVAC systems to ensure safety and reliability. Inspections will:

  • Address unsafe conditions;
  • Help prevent malfunctions;
  • Help appliances perform more efficiently, saving energy and money; and
  • Foster environmental stewardship through more efficient operations.

"We want to help our customers stay safe and warm this season by performing HVAC system tune-ups," said Todd Berreman, director of energy efficiency for CenterPoint Energy.  "We are also pleased to offer furnace and boiler system tune-up rebates to customers who complete qualifying inspection and maintenance of their natural gas heating systems."

"We have wonderful trade partners across the state who can help residents tune-up their existing system or recommend a new one if they're in the market," says Greg Olson, Xcel Energy Trade Relations Manager. "We recommend getting bids from three dealers. Check xcelenergy.com for a list of participating dealers and for appliance rebate information."

Heating System Tips

Furnaces and other fuel-burning appliances such as water heaters, clothes dryers and ovens produce carbon monoxide (CO) that can reach dangerous levels if not maintained or used properly. CenterPoint Energy and Xcel Energy recommend that customers have all of their fuel-burning appliances inspected by a qualified technician at the start of the heating season.  It is also recommended that homeowners purchase a CO detection device with an audible alarm and digital display, install it 10 feet from each bedroom as required by law, change the batteries as necessary and check for proper operation. 

Other energy efficiency tips include:

  • Change furnace filters per manufacturer's recommendations;
  • Lower your thermostat 8-10 degrees when you're sleeping or away; and
  • Seal off air-leaks through weather stripping doors, windows and gaps along the home's foundation.

For other energy saving tips and rebate information, please visit CenterPointEnergy.com/SaveEnergy and xcelenergy.com/Rebates.

 

About CenterPoint Energy

CenterPoint Energy, Inc., headquartered in Houston, Texas, is a domestic energy delivery company that includes electric transmission & distribution, natural gas distribution and energy services operations. The company serves more than five million metered customers primarily in Arkansas, Louisiana, Minnesota, Mississippi, Oklahoma, and Texas. The company also owns 54.1 percent of the common and subordinated units representing limited partner interests in Enable Midstream Partners, a publicly traded master limited partnership it jointly controls with OGE Energy Corp., which owns, operates and develops natural gas and crude oil infrastructure assets. With more than 7,700 employees, CenterPoint Energy and its predecessor companies have been in business for more than 150 years. The utility also operates a non-regulated business in Minnesota called Home Service Plus®. For more information, visit the website at CenterPointEnergy.com.

About Xcel Energy

Xcel Energy (NYSE: XEL) provides the energy that powers millions of homes and businesses across eight Western and Midwestern states. Headquartered in Minneapolis, the company is an industry leader in responsibly reducing carbon emissions and producing and delivering clean energy solutions from a variety of renewable sources at competitive prices. For more information, visit xcelenergy.com or follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

 

2017-10-25T05:00:00Z
MPHA, SRC, and CenterPoint Energy team up for extensive weatherization of Glendale Townhomes

​The Minneapolis Public Housing Authority (MPHA), Sustainable Resources Center, Inc. (SRC), and CenterPoint Energy are pleased to announce funding and a timeline for winter weatherization and energy efficiency improvements across all 28 buildings of the Glendale Townhomes.

Glendale is a public housing development of 184 family townhomes in the Prospect Park neighborhood of Minneapolis. It was built in 1952, without modern design or materials ideal for Minnesota winters. In June, SRC weatherized an eight-townhome Glendale building as a pilot project—including wall and attic insulation, vent fans, and weather-stripping—at a cost of approximately $8,000 to $10,000 per unit.

"The pilot was a success in terms of what we learned, and the immediate improvements in comfort we were able to achieve for residents," said Greg Russ, MPHA's Executive Director. "Knowing that, we could push forward with SRC and CenterPoint Energy to find a way to extend the work to every home." Financial support for the project comes from CenterPoint Energy's Conservation Improvement Program (CIP) and the U.S. Department of Energy's "Weatherization Assistance Program" (WAP), which is administered by the Minnesota Department of Commerce.

Based upon the findings from the pilot, SRC anticipates weatherizing an additional 10 to 12 buildings by the end of the year, with the remainder in 2018. SRC provides free home energy upgrades to hundreds of income-eligible homeowners and renters in Hennepin County each year. The Glendale project alone will reach more than 600 people.

"We are proud to be a part of this project and partner with MPHA and SRC to make a positive difference for our neighbors," said Todd Berreman, director of energy efficiency for CenterPoint Energy.  "We look forward to completing the work in the remaining Glendale townhomes and providing a more pleasant and energy-efficient living environment for the residents of this community."

SRC will conduct an energy audit of each building, identifying priorities for each unit. Along with insulation and ventilation, enhancements could include cleaning, repair, or replacement of furnaces or water heaters, and installation of energy-efficient light bulbs.

The three partners are grateful to Minneapolis Ward 2 City Council Member Cam Gordon for helping them bridge the unique hurdles posed by this large-scale project.  

"Glendale has provided home and community for low-income families for 65 years, and we intend for it do so for the next 65," said MPHA Executive Director Russ. "Even as we look to the long-term preservation of Glendale, this major investment with SRC and CenterPoint will make a meaningful difference for families today."

2017-10-18T05:00:00Z
Call CenterPoint Energy now for Cold Weather Rule protection

Minneapolis – Oct. 9, 2017 – CenterPoint Energy is reminding customers about certain rights and their responsibilities as it relates to the Cold Weather Rule (CWR), which protects residential customers experiencing difficulty paying their natural gas bill from having their natural gas service disconnected between Oct. 15, 2017 and April 15, 2018. While the CWR does not prevent customers from being disconnected for nonpayment, it does provide customers extra protection as defined in the CWR, but residential customers must contact CenterPoint Energy to set up a payment plan.

"We want to make sure all of our customers understand the Minnesota Cold Weather Rule. It helps those customers who may have trouble paying their natural gas bill during cold winter months," said Brad Tutunjian, vice president of Gas Operations in Minnesota.  "But, it also helps customers whose service is currently disconnected. I encourage those customers to call us now at 1-800-245-2377 to qualify under the Rule. We'll work together to establish a payment plan so their service is turned back when heating season begins."

Customers who anticipate having trouble paying their entire natural gas bill, have received a Notice of Proposed Disconnection or need gas service reconnected are all urged to call CenterPoint Energy to establish a payment plan. A payment plan will include what is owed as well as the amount to be billed and will take into consideration a customer's financial situation and any other special circumstances. The payment plan must also be agreeable to both the customer and CenterPoint Energy. If an agreed-upon payment plan cannot be reached, customers have a right to appeal under the CWR.

Under the CWR, special payment terms are available to customers who:

  • Apply for and receive Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) funding assistance in Minnesota; or
  • Meet income guidelines set by the state of Minnesota and provide proof of income.

Call CenterPoint Energy to set up a payment plan at 1-612-372-4680 or 1-800-729-6164. For additional information, please visit CenterPointEnergy.com/ReadyForWinter.

Other helpful information:

  • In addition to calling CenterPoint Energy to discuss and establish a payment plan, company representatives are available to refer customers to social service agencies who may have energy assistance funds;
  • Customers can also sign up for CenterPoint Energy's Average Monthly Billing Plan, which spreads natural gas costs throughout the year, helping customers avoid payment peaks. Customers can sign up online through My Account at CenterPointEnergy.com/Register or by calling CenterPoint Energy;
  • The Minnesota Department of Commerce maintains a website that provides information on energy efficiency and heating assistance programs; and
  • Customers interested in helping others pay their natural gas bill can support the Salvation Army's HeatShare program. Visit The Salvation Army's website to make a donation.

CenterPoint Energy, Inc., headquartered in Houston, Texas, is a domestic energy delivery company that includes electric transmission & distribution, natural gas distribution and energy services operations. The company serves more than five million metered customers primarily in Arkansas, Louisiana, Minnesota, Mississippi, Oklahoma, and Texas. The company also owns a 55.4 percent limited partner interest in Enable Midstream Partners, a publicly traded master limited partnership it jointly controls with OGE Energy Corp., which owns, operates and develops natural gas and crude oil infrastructure assets. With more than 7,400 employees, CenterPoint Energy and its predecessor companies have been in business for more than 150 years. The utility also operates a non-regulated business in Minnesota called Home Service Plus®. For more information, visit the website at CenterPointEnergy.com.

2017-10-09T05:00:00Z
CenterPoint Energy prepares for TS Nate; urges customers to be prepared for potential flooding and issues important natural gas safety tips

Houston – Oct. 6, 2017 – As the Gulf Coast braces for Tropical Storm Nate, CenterPoint Energy is closely monitoring and preparing for the storm. The company has developed the following pre- and post-storm natural gas safety tips that customers should follow:

Before the storm:

  • Do not turn off your natural gas service at the meter; doing so could allow water to enter the natural gas lines.
  • Be alert for the smell of natural gas. If you smell gas, leave the area immediately on foot and tell others to leave, too.
  • If you smell gas, do not turn the lights on or off, smoke, strike a match, use a cell phone or operate anything that might cause a spark, including a flashlight or a generator.
  • Do not attempt to turn natural gas valves on or off. Once safely away from the area, call CenterPoint Energy at 888-876-5786. The company will send a trained service technician.

After the storm:

  • If your home was flooded, call a licensed plumber or gas appliance technician to inspect your appliances and gas piping to make sure they are in good operating condition before calling CenterPoint Energy to reconnect service. This includes outdoor gas appliances including pool heaters, gas grills and gas lights.
  • Call 811, the nationwide Call Before You Dig number before cleaning debris, digging on your property or to locate underground natural gas lines and other underground utility lines.
  • Be aware of where your natural gas meter is located. As debris is put out for heavy trash pickup, make sure it is placed away from the meter. If debris is near a gas meter, the equipment used by trash collectors could pull up the meter, damaging it and causing a potentially hazardous situation. If this happens, leave the area immediately and call CenterPoint Energy at 888-876-5786.

Visit CenterPoint Energy's weather safety pages and follow the company @cnpalerts and Facebook.com/CenterPoint Energy.

2017-10-06T05:00:00Z
CenterPoint Energy urges customers to stay safe during clean-up

HOUSTON - September 1, 2017 – The safety of our employees and our customers is our top priority. We urge customers to follow the below safety tips as clean-up efforts continue following Hurricane Harvey.

ELECTRIC SAFETY TIPS

Stay away from downed power lines. Be especially mindful of downed lines that could be hidden in flood waters and debris, and treat all downed lines as if they are energized or “live.” Boats being used in high water can expose you to danger from power lines at their normal height. Be aware and stay away. DO NOT attempt to remove a tree limb or other debris from a power line. Once away from the area, call 713-207-2222 and we will respond as soon as it is safe.

Power restoration

• If you find that water has risen above your electrical outlets, you must call a licensed electrician before you turn on the main circuit breaker or turn on the power for any connected appliances, such as televisions, computers and more.

• Your electrician will assess the damage and will then need to ensure that your home’s electrical system is safe to receive power.

• Your electrician may need to either call CenterPoint Energy or direct you to call us at 713-207-2222 to ensure that it is safe to perform electrical work. CenterPoint Energy may temporarily disconnect service to your home to allow work to be performed.

• Even if you or your electrician calls and asks us to remotely disconnect service, there still could be voltage present. Therefore, we will ask the electrician and you to confirm you want us to proceed before going forward, and will remind you to take precautions around your breakers.

• CenterPoint Energy is responsible for and will make repairs to the electric delivery system up to where it connects to your home or business. However, you are responsible for repairs if there is damage to the meter box or weatherhead (where the line enters your home through a pipe).

• If the meter box or weatherhead is damaged, our crews will not be able to re-establish service. If in doubt, contact a licensed electrician now to make an inspection and any necessary repairs.

Appliance and equipment safety

• All electrical appliances and electronic equipment that have been submerged in water must be dried thoroughly for at least one week. Then, you should have them checked by a qualified repair professional before turning them on.

• Do not try to repair a flood-damaged appliance as it could result in electrical shock or death. Attempting to restart it could result in further damage and costly repairs. Page 2 of 2 For more information contact Olivia Ross 713.207.3288 24-hour media access 713.619.5143 For Immediate Release

• If the outside unit of your air conditioning system has been under water, the controls may have mud and water accumulated in them. Have the unit inspected by a qualified air conditioning technician before using it.

• Never connect a portable electric generator or a motor home/RV generator directly to your home’s electrical system during a power outage. Electricity could back feed into the power lines and endanger repair workers.

Call 811 before any digging is started – it’s the law. Striking buried utility lines can cause serious injury or death. Alert participating utility companies, such as electric, gas, cable and phone about planned digging so they can mark the appropriate location of their underground lines. Please be prepared for a longer than usual wait time during the next few weeks, and do not dig until the lines have been marked.

NATURAL GAS SAFETY TIPS

• Do not turn off your natural gas service at the meter; doing so could allow water to enter the natural gas lines.

• Be alert for the smell of natural gas - It smells like rotten eggs. If you do smell natural gas, leave the area immediately on foot and tell others to leave, too.

• Do NOT turn on your lights, smoke, strike a match, use a cell phone or operate anything that might cause a spark, including a flashlight or a generator.

• Do not attempt to turn natural gas valves on or off. Once you are safely away from the area, call 911 and 888-876-5786. Once it is safe, CenterPoint Energy will send a trained service technician.

• If your home was flooded, call a licensed plumber or gas appliance technician to inspect your appliances and gas piping to make sure they are in good operating condition before calling CenterPoint Energy to reconnect service. This includes outdoor gas appliances including pool heaters, gas grills and gas lights.

Call 811 before any digging is started – it’s the law. Striking buried utility lines can cause serious injury or death. Alert participating utility companies, such as electric, gas, cable and phone about planned digging so they can mark the appropriate location of their underground lines. Please be prepared for a longer than usual wait time during the next few weeks, and do not dig until the lines have been marked.

• Be aware of where your natural gas meter is located. As debris is put out for heavy trash pickup, make sure it is placed away from the meter. In many areas the meter may be located near the curb. If debris is near a gas meter, the mechanized equipment used by trash collectors could pull up the meter, damaging it and causing a potentially hazardous situation. If this happens, leave the area immediately and call CenterPoint Energy at 888- 876-5786.

• Visit CenterPointEnergy.com/StormCenter for natural gas safety tips and other resources.

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2017-09-01T05:00:00Z
CenterPoint Energy donates $1.25 million to assist Hurricane Harvey recovery and relief efforts

Houston – Sept. 1, 2017 – CenterPoint Energy today announced that it is committing $1.25 million to Hurricane Harvey recovery and relief efforts. CenterPoint Energy’s contributions include a $250,000 donation each to the American Red Cross for Hurricane Harvey relief efforts, the City of Houston Mayor’s Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund and the United Way of Greater Houston disaster relief efforts.

“Our thoughts are with everyone impacted by this unprecedented catastrophe,” said Scott Prochazka, president and chief executive officer of CenterPoint Energy. “CenterPoint Energy has been a part of these communities for more than 150 years. The safety and well-being of our communities and employees impacted by Hurricane Harvey remain our top priorities.”

CenterPoint Energy is also donating $300,000 to support employees across its service territory significantly impacted by the storm. The company has also established an employee assistance fund, CenterPoint Energy Employees 1st Fund, to collect employee donations and match them up to a total of $200,000. “We take pride in lending a helping hand to those in need, which is a core part of our culture,” added Prochazka.

In addition to the charitable contributions, employee volunteerism is an important part of CenterPoint Energy’s role in communities throughout its service territory. Employee volunteers provide their time and energy to assist with altruistic initiatives. In 2016, employees, retirees and their families and friends contributed 237,500 hours to their communities, and the company donated more than 2,000 grants to qualified nonprofit organizations.

CenterPoint Energy, Inc., headquartered in Houston, Texas, is a domestic energy delivery company that includes electric transmission & distribution, natural gas distribution and energy services operations. The company serves more than five million metered customers primarily in Arkansas, Louisiana, Minnesota, Mississippi, Oklahoma, and Texas. The company also owns 54.1 percent of the common and subordinated units representing limited partner interests in Enable Midstream Partners, a publicly traded master limited partnership it jointly controls with OGE Energy Corp., which owns, operates and develops natural gas and crude oil infrastructure assets. With more than 7,700 employees, CenterPoint Energy and its predecessor companies have been in business for more than 150 years. For more information, please visit www.CenterPointEnergy.com.

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2017-09-01T05:00:00Z
CenterPoint Energy awards grants to communities for safety initiatives
Minneapolis - Aug. 28, 2017 - CenterPoint Energy’s Community Partnership Grant Program awards grants to local communities to fund safety-related equipment and projects.  The company recently awarded several communities grants that will be used to serve the communities. They are listed below:

 

Date Given ​City ​Grant Amount GivenSafety Related Equipment/Project
​8/28/17 ​ ​ ​ ​ ​​Luverne​$495​Emergency communication equipment
​Mankato​$2,500​Firefighter protective hoods
​Mounds View​$495​First aid training equipment
​Paynesville​$2,500​Squad car portable radios

 

“Safety is one of CenterPoint Energy’s core values. Through the Community Partnership Grant program CenterPoint Energy has partnered with communities supporting our shared commitment to safety while delivering a safe, reliable natural gas service for over 150 years. Over the past 14 years, CenterPoint Energy has contributed $1.5 million toward safety initiatives in our communities,” said Jean Krause, Community Relations Director for CenterPoint Energy. “These grants help us stay connected with our emergency officials and aid them in keeping our neighbors and communities safe. “

To see what CenterPoint Energy is doing in the community, please visit our 2016 Corporate Responsibility Report.

CenterPoint Energy, Inc., headquartered in Houston, Texas, is a domestic energy delivery company that includes electric transmission & distribution, natural gas distribution and energy services operations. The company serves more than five million metered customers primarily in Arkansas, Louisiana, Minnesota, Mississippi, Oklahoma, and Texas. The company also owns a 55.4 percent limited partner interest in Enable Midstream Partners, a publicly traded master limited partnership it jointly controls with OGE Energy Corp., which owns, operates and develops natural gas and crude oil infrastructure assets. With more than 7,400 employees, CenterPoint Energy and its predecessor companies have been in business for more than 150 years. The utility also operates a non-regulated business in Minnesota called Home Service Plus®. For more information, visit the website at CenterPointEnergy.com.

2017-08-28T05:00:00Z
CenterPoint Energy assessing damage, restoring power following Hurricane Harvey

​Crews have restored power to more than 175,000 customers in the last 24 hours; Keep phone lines open for electric and gas emergency calls only; Estimated electric restoration times will be provided once assessments are completed; Natural gas system in Houston area is functioning normally; Not yet safe for crews to assess natural gas system in Victoria, Texas area

Houston – Aug. 26, 2017 – CenterPoint Energy has restored power to more than 175,000 customers throughout its service territory over the last 24 hours. Of the 2.4 million CenterPoint Energy customers, more than 98 percent currently have power, and approximately 22,000 are without power as of 12 p.m.

“While our electric system is performing well, patience will be key as some areas will be difficult for our crews to safely access due to flooding, tornado warnings and other safety-related issues,” said Kenny Mercado, senior vice president of Electric Operations for CenterPoint Energy. “We’ve also called in additional external contract resources to support our restoration efforts and have established a staging site in Fort Bend County. Additional sites are being evaluated at this time.”

“Customers do not need to call us to report outages,” he added. “Our smart meters tell us which customers are out. We ask that everyone please keep phone lines open for electric or gas emergency calls only.”

Scott Doyle, senior vice president of Natural Gas Distribution, said, “Our natural gas distribution system in the greater Houston area is functioning normally; however, crews are responding to gas leak calls in Sinton, Texas, near Corpus Christi, primarily due to toppled trees which have uprooted gas lines.

“Customers need to call us if they smell natural gas or see a damaged line,” he added. “It is not yet safe for crews to assess our gas system in Victoria, Texas; we will begin our assessments as soon as it is safe to do so.”

For latest information on power outages*:

*Please note that some outage notifications may be delayed. Due to the unpredictable nature of Hurricane Harvey, estimated restoration times on Outage Tracker and Power Alert Service are not being provided at this time.

The company urges the public to follow these important electric and natural gas safety tips:

Electric

  • Stay away from downed power lines. Be especially mindful of downed lines that could be hidden in flood waters and treat all downed lines as if they are energized.
  • If you experience flooding and water has risen above the electrical outlets in your home, contact a licensed electrician before turning on the main circuit breaker or trying to restore power.
  • All electrical appliances and electronic equipment that have been submerged in water need to dry thoroughly for at least one week. Then, have them checked by a qualified repair person before turning them on. Attempting to repair a flood-damaged appliance could result in electrical shock or death. Attempting to restart it could result in further damage and costly repairs.
  • If the outside unit of an air conditioning system has been under water, mud and water may have accumulated in the controls. Have the unit checked by a qualified air conditioning technician.

Natural Gas

  • Do not turn off your natural gas service at the meter; doing so could allow water to enter the natural gas lines.
  • Be alert for the smell of natural gas. If you smell gas, leave the area immediately on foot and tell others to leave, too.
  • If you smell gas, do not turn the lights on or off, smoke, strike a match, use a cell phone or operate anything that might cause a spark, including a flashlight or a generator.
  • Do not attempt to turn natural gas valves on or off. Once safely away from the area, call 888-876-5786 and CenterPoint Energy will send a trained service technician.
  • If your home was flooded, call a licensed plumber or gas appliance technician to inspect your appliances and gas piping to make sure they are in good operating condition before calling CenterPoint Energy to reconnect service. This includes outdoor gas appliances including pool heaters, gas grills and gas lights.
  • Before cleaning debris, digging on your property or to locate underground natural gas lines and other underground utility lines, call 811, the nationwide Call Before You Dig number.
  • Be aware of where your natural gas meter is located. As debris is put out for heavy trash pickup, make sure it is placed away from the meter. In many areas the meter may be located near the curb. If debris is near a gas meter, the mechanized equipment used by trash collectors could pull up the meter, damaging it and causing a potentially hazardous situation. If this happens, leave the area immediately and call CenterPoint Energy at 888-876-5786.
2017-08-26T05:00:00Z
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