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RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) -- North Carolina's utilities regulator is expected to endorse a settlement ending its investigation into whether Duke Energy misled officials before taking over its in-state rival.

The North Carolina Utilities Commission meets on Monday. The commission had the power to reverse or alter its earlier approval allowing the merger with Progress Energy to create the country's largest electric company.

Utilities commission attorneys will argue the settlement serves the public interest because it affirms the regulator's role over legal monopolies like Charlotte-based Duke Energy. The settlement also requires that Duke's shareholders bear the cost of the investigation and executive severance costs. Duke must come up with another $30 million for ratepayers and low-income assistance.

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