COLUMBIA, S.C. — The Latest on the South Carolina House passing a bill ending the charge for abandoned nuclear plants (all times local):
The South Carolina House has passed legislation that would remove the $27 average monthly charge that customers of a private utility pay for two nuclear plants that will likely never be built.
The proposal was part of a bill passed Wednesday to repeal a law that allowed South Carolina Electric & Gas to charge for the plants before they generated any power.
SCE&G and partner Santee Cooper eventually charged customers close to $2 billion. The bill stops SCE&G from charging for the plants at least until regulators and courts hear SCE&G’s challenge that it still deserves the money.
The bill goes to the Senate. Gov. Henry McMaster says he will sign it.
The proposal casts doubt on a proposed takeover of SCE&G by Virginia-based Dominion Energy, which said its offer hinged on being able to charge for the abandoned plants for at least 20 years.
Customers of a private South Carolina utility would no longer be charged for two nuclear power plants that the company no longer wants to build, under a proposal approved by the state House.
House Speaker Jay Lucas took the rare step Wednesday of coming down to the House floor to lay out his support for the amendment. It’s attached to a bill changing the law that allowed South Carolina Electric & Gas to charge for the plants before they were built.
The proposal eliminates the monthly charge to ratepayers for the plants, at least until regulators and courts hear SCE&G’s challenge that it still deserves the money. The charge averages $27 per ratepayer. The full bill awaits a vote.
SCE&G and state-owned Santee Cooper spent billions on the incomplete reactors.