SC lawmakers wants to strike rate hikes off utility bills

COLUMBIA, S.C. (WSAV)– 18%…that’s how much of an increase SCANA customers have been seeing on their bill. It’s a collection being used to offset money lost in the failed nuclear plant.
Monday, members of a House committee met to talk about ways to strike that increase off of utility bills and reform the agencies responsible for the hikes. Representative Micah Caskey said, “One of the things that happened back in 2007 SCANA was allowed to start recovering it financial costs before the project was completed, so before it was constructed.”
According to reports, the Public Service Commission approved 98% of SCANA’s requested rate hikes to pay for the failed project. Instead of the utility company proving that it was being productive, the Office of Regulatory Staff had to prove it was not.
There have also been talks of selling the South Carolina based Santee Cooper, but that has a lot of representatives concerned. The company employs more than 5000 people in the state.
Representative Caskey said there are too many unanswered questions. “The governor has talked about it but we haven’t seen any hard proposals yet. we haven’t had any independent analysis, we don’t even know what it’s worth.. until that day comes i think we’d be happy to look at it but until then we don’t even know what that deal will be,” said Caskey.
So far lawmakers are suggesting expanding resources for the group that investigates these types of projects and the businesses involved.

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