By Bob Salsberg, Associated Press

BOSTON (AP) — Gov. Deval Patrick’s administration says Northeast Utilities and NStar have agreed to purchase power from Cape Wind as a condition of a proposed merger of the utilities.

WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Mark Katic reports

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Secretary of Environmental Affairs Richard Sullivan said the agreement announced Wednesday would also include a four-year freeze on base distribution rates, a one-time $21 million credit for ratepayers and a promise that the merger would protect jobs for Massachusetts utility workers.

Sullivan said the merged company would buy 27.5 percent of the power produced by Cape Wind, the nation’s first federally-approved offshore wind farm.

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Cape Wind previously announced an agreement to sell 50 percent of its power to National Grid.

Wednesday’s agreement does not guarantee Hartford-based Northeast Utilities $4.6 billion purchase of Boston-based NStar.

It must still win final approval from utility regulators in Massachusetts and Connecticut.

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Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.