Tag Archives: State Regulation of Public Utilities Review Committee

S.C. lawmakers ensure PSC incumbent retains seat – for now

May 11, 2018

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By RICK BRUNDRETT On the last day of regular session Thursday, S.C. lawmakers in an unrecorded voice vote effectively approved a “do-over” election for a state Public Service Commission seat, allowing the incumbent to stay on months after his term expires and the opportunity to decide on matters related to the controversial V.C. Summer project. […]

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High-profile PSC elections pushed back to last day of regular session

May 8, 2018

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By RICK BRUNDRETT On Thursday – the last day of the General Assembly’s regular session and when most state government offices will be closed for a holiday – lawmakers are set to fill three open seats on the S.C. Public Service Commission, the state regulatory agency that routinely approved electric rate hikes for the failed […]

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Big bills, little product from V.C. Summer consultants hired by Legislature

April 25, 2018

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By RICK BRUNDRETT Three out-of-state consulting businesses hired by the S.C. Legislature to provide “advice” on the V.C. Summer fiasco have submitted bills totaling more than $230,000, though only one firm has produced a written report. To put the $232,379 public tab in some perspective, it could cover the failed nuclear project portion of about […]

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No V.C. Summer concerns raised by obscure state panel that includes governor

April 18, 2018

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By RICK BRUNDRETT During the years-long V.C. Summer nuclear project, a little-known committee including the governor and four other elected statewide officials never met once to discuss the now-abandoned project. And despite all the controversy surrounding the $9 billion debacle, the Santee Cooper advisory board – made up of the governor, attorney general, comptroller general, […]

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General Assembly spends over $70K so far on V.C. Summer ‘advice’

March 31, 2018

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By RICK BRUNDRETT The S.C. Legislature spent more than $70,000 for an outside consulting firm to give it “advice” late last year relating to the V.C. Summer debacle – a financial quagmire that lawmakers played a large role in creating. The Virginia-based firm was paid by the House and Senate without producing a report for […]

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Santee Cooper execs get big bonuses, pay hikes, while nuclear debt mushrooms

February 27, 2018

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By RICK BRUNDRETT As state-owned utility Santee Cooper was racking up billions in debt – which ratepayers are expected to shoulder – for the failed V.C. Summer nuclear project, the company’s top executives were raking in huge bonuses and salary hikes. More than $4 billion in bonds that were sold to finance the biggest financial […]

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State utility watchdog rarely bared teeth in V.C. Summer debacle

January 24, 2018

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By RICK BRUNDRETT Over the years, the state’s utility watchdog acted more like a lapdog in reviewing rate hikes for the now-abandoned V.C. Summer nuclear project. The S.C. Office of Regulatory Staff (ORS), which under state law is supposed to represent ratepayers’ interests, didn’t oppose any of the nine South Carolina Electric & Gas rate […]

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Glowing job reviews routine for those who approved V.C. Summer rate hikes

January 19, 2018

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Good job

  By RICK BRUNDRETT The S.C. Public Service Commission members who approved nine rate hikes for the failed V.C. Summer nuclear project have performed flawlessly in their six-figure jobs – at least in the eyes of the legislative committee that essentially controls them. A review by The Nerve of annual work-performance reviews done by the […]

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Powerful State House panel behind blueprint for South Carolina’s nuclear push

January 17, 2018

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PURC Report

By RICK BRUNDRETT Nearly a decade ago, an influential state legislative committee quietly released a report advocating a quick expansion of nuclear energy in South Carolina, claiming, for instance, the small state might face power shortages and blackouts by 2016. Those dire predictions didn’t come true. As the now-abandoned V.C. Summer construction project in Fairfield County […]

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What S.C. lawmakers aren’t telling the public about the failed V.C. Summer project

January 10, 2018

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By RICK BRUNDRETT Last summer’s stunning news that South Carolina Electric & Gas and its partner, state-owned Santee Cooper, would abandon a major expansion of the V.C. Summer nuclear plant – after some $9 billion was sunk into the project – sent public officials scrambling for answers in the wake of public outrage. State and […]

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