- The ratepayer advocate for South Carolina's electric customers says SCE&G, a subsidiary of SCANA Corp., owes about $1 billion in refunds over the scuttled development of new nuclear units at the V.C. Summer plant, the State reports.
- The Office of Regulatory Staff (ORS) this week filed a motion asking the Public Service Commission to determine how the funds would be returned to customers — either in rebates, bills credits or another method.
- Repayments to customers would come out of a financial guarantee from Toshiba, the parent company of project developer Westinghouse. In September, CitiBank purchased that guarantee from SCE&G and Santee Cooper for almost $2 billion.
Customers of SCE&G have already paid about $1.7 billion towards the development of two new nuclear units, and advocates say a chunk of that money should be returned.
Regulatory Staff director Dukes Scott told The State that funds returned to SCE&G, from the guarantee sale to Toshiba, would likely be about $700 million. "It needs to be squared away, and the sooner it is resolved, the better for customers.," Scott told the newspaper.
Last month, ORS asked state regulators to stop SCE&G from continuing to collect fees for the failed development. The utility is collecting about $37 million every month to pay for the project, according to Charlotte Business Journal.
SCE&G and state-owned utility Santee Cooper spent $9 billion to develop the plant so far, but costs could have reached an estimated $25 billion if the project was completed. But in the wake of project audit coming to light, there have been questions about when the utilities knew the doomed project was unlikely to succeed.
A report completed by Bechtel in early 2016 indicated the project was in trouble, but it was months before SCE&G informed regulators that its share of the development costs had risen more than $800 million — and about a year and a half before the utilities agreed to scrap the project.