Refunds arriving for Santee Cooper and cooperative customers
MONCKS CORNER, S.C.
Customers of some South Carolina utilities are getting refunds of some of their payments toward a failed nuclear construction project.
Customers of state-owned utility Santee Cooper and associated electric cooperatives are getting checks if they have a refund of more than $25 from the failed V.C. Sumner nuclear plant, or a bill credit if they’re owed less than $25. They’re going to people who were customers between January 2007 and Jan. 31, 2020.
People who are no longer customers of Santee Cooper or the cooperatives will also get checks, Santee Cooper spokesperson Mollie Gore told The State of Columbia.
The money is part of a $520 million class action lawsuit settlement from the abandoned $9 billion nuclear plant project in Fairfield County. Customers paid toward the project, which fell behind schedule and reported cost overruns before it was abandoned.
The refunds were scheduled to go out this week to more than 1.6 million customers, averaging close to $170, said former state Sen. Vincent Sheheen, an attorney who worked on the settlement.
South Carolina Electric & Gas, which was bought by Dominion Energy after the project’s collapse, contributed $320 million toward the settlement for customers of the private utility.
Gore said Santee Cooper is contributing $200 million in three installments toward the settlement. Santee Cooper customers also are slated to receive an additional refund in late 2022, Gore said.
As part of the settlement, Santee Cooper agreed to a four-year rate freeze.