By CATHY BUSSEWITZ
HONOLULU (AP) - The chairman of the Hawaii Public Utilities Commission says the regulatory body isn't making a decision about a proposed merger between Hawaiian Electric and NextEra before a Friday deadline.
Either party can walk away from the deal after June 3. To do so, Florida-based NextEra would have to pay $95 million.
PUC Chairman Randy Iwase says commissioners are reviewing thousands of documents to decide if the merger is in the public's interest. He says in Hawaii, utilities can't turn to another state for help if the grid goes down, so they have to make the decision carefully.
Iwase says just because you've gone on a first date doesn't mean you have to get married to the first suitor that comes along.
He says the commission might make a decision during June.