U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission
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U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission

United States of America
before the
Securities and Exchange Commission

November 5, 2002

Public Utility Holding Company Act of 1935
Release No. 27594

Administrative Proceeding
File No. 3-10909


In the Matter of

Applications of Enron Corp. for Exemptions Under the Public Utility Holding Company Act of 1935
(Nos. 70-9661 and 70-10056)


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Order Denying Motion of Thelen Reid & Priest LLP to Participate on a Limited Basis

On October 7, 2002, the Securities and Exhange Commission ordered a hearing on Enron Corp.'s applications for exemption from all provisions of the Public Utility Holding Company Act of 1935 (the "Act"), except for Section 9(a)(2) (the "Order"). 1 The Order directed any person seeking to participate in the hearing on a limited basis pursuant to Commission Rule of Practice 210(c) 2 to file a motion describing the nature and extent of the movant's interest with respect to each phase of the hearing.

On October 23, 2002, Thelen Reid & Priest LLP ("TRP") filed a motion for leave to participate on a limited basis. In its motion, TRP states that it represents a number of exempt and registered public utility holding companies with issues under the Act similar to the issues under consideration in this proceeding, and therefore the determination whether Enron satisfies any of the particular criteria for an exemption from the Act "is of interest to many of the companies we represent." TRP further states that, in the event the hearing proceeds to Phase II, the issue in that portion of the hearing "could have an impact on our client representation."

Pursuant to Commission Rule of Practice 210(c), the ability of a non-party to participate in a proceeding is discretionary, and approval from the hearing officer is required. 3 Rule 210(c) provides, in relevant part, that "any person may seek leave to participate on a limited basis as a non-party participant as to any matter affecting the person's interests." Thus, in order to obtain leave to participate on a limited basis, the matter must affect the person's interests.

TRP's motion makes clear that, at best, the interests affected by this proceeding are those of TRP's exempt and registered public utility holding company clients. The affect, however, that this proceeding may have on exempt and/or registered public utility holding companies will be the same irrespective of whether such companies are clients of TRP. Other than the speculative statement that granting an exemption "could" have an impact on TRP's client representation, TRP does not describe the nature and extent of TRP's interest with respect to each phase of the hearing. Accordingly, TRP has failed to demonstrate that its interests are affected by this proceeding and no basis exists to permit TRP's participation, even on a limited basis.

IT IS ORDERED that, the motion of TRP for leave to participate on a limited basis, be and hereby is DENIED.

Roel C. Campos
Commissioner

Endnotes

1 Holding Co. Act. Rel. No. 27574 (Oct. 7, 2002), 67 Fed. Reg. 63464. The Order contemplates a two-phase hearing: Phase I is for the limited purpose of determining whether Enron satisfies any of the particular criteria for an exemption under various sections of the Act. If a criterion for exemption is satisfied, Phase II will be for the purpose of determining whether granting an exemption to Enron would be detrimental to the public interest or the interest of investors or consumers.

2 17 C.F.R. § 201.210(c).

3 See, Rule 210(c), Comment (c). Although certain persons are entitled to leave to participate under Rule 210(c)(2), that provision is not applicable here.

 

http://www.sec.gov/rules/other/35-27594.htm


Modified: 11/18/2002