Office of the Attorney General News Release Archive


Tuesday, January 29, 2002

TEXAS ATTORNEY GENERAL'S OFFICE URGES APPOINTMENT OF COMMITTEE OF FORMER AND RETIRED ENRON EMPLOYEES

AUSTIN - The Office of the Attorney General of Texas today filed a motion with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court, Southern District of New York, urging the appointment of an Official Committee of Former and Retired Employees in the Enron bankruptcy case, Deputy Attorney General Jeff Boyd announced.

"It has been our desire throughout this process to speak as often as possible on behalf of the State of Texas in support of the former and retired Enron employees who have been so drastically harmed by these events. The relief we seek in this motion provides the best opportunity to ensure that their voices are heard and their interests are protected in the bankruptcy case," said Boyd, who heads the Enron Task Force of the Texas Attorney General's Office.

"While the major financial creditors of Enron have a right to adequate representation in the bankruptcy case, so do the thousands of former and retired Enron employees who are the least able, on an individual basis, to participate meaningfully in this case," Boyd explained.

"The need for an opportunity (for former employees) to participate in this case is important to preserving the integrity of the bankruptcy system and its fundamental concept of notice and opportunity to be heard," the motion states. "At present, individual former employees lack the ability to participate and be heard in this case."

The motion also addresses the interest of retired employees: "Retirees deserve the peace of mind that would come from knowing their benefits cannot be changed or, at least, having a say in what those changes will be."

The Texas Attorney General's Office on Jan. 7, 2002 sent a letter with the same request for a committee of former and retired employees to United States Trustee Carolyn Schwartz, but she has not yet responded with a decision.

The motion states that "any further delay will serve only to prejudice and harm the former and retired employees who need to be represented by an official committee in these (bankruptcy) proceedings."

Should Schwartz decide not to appoint a committee, the filing of the motion now will enable the bankruptcy court to address the issue as soon as possible. Or, if she decides to appoint the committee, the motion to the bankruptcy court could be withdrawn. A hearing on the motion has been set for Feb. 27 in New York.

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