The State Newspaper is reporting that the South Carolina Senate decided today that it would not be moving forward with the consultant responsible for the vetting and research for the possible sale of Santee Cooper.
It was a stunning move that caught many state leaders by surprise and could leave customers on the hook for the state owned utility’s debt related to the failed attempt to build two reactors at the V.C. Summer Nuclear Facility.
This unnecessary delay could end up costing Santee Cooper and electrical cooperative customers, who are currently on the hook for an estimated $9 billion in debt owed by the state-owned power company.
Just in the past couple weeks, the same Virginia-based consulting firm produced a report outlining the strong market interest in purchasing Santee Cooper and some of the bids will prevent customers from having to pay the V.C. Summer debt, and keep rates low.
But when the Santee Cooper sale study committee decided last week that it wants more details on those offers before making a decision, the Senate Leadership said today that it wasn’t willing to commit the funds to make that happen.
Governor McMaster’s spokesman was quoted in The State as saying that this is a “a disappointing turn of events” especially since in the recent weeks they have learned the sale of Santee Cooper “would result in lower rates for its customers.” However, that news hasn’t been enough to get the Senate on board to act.
If you’re interested in learning more about this issue and finding ways on how you can contact your legislators to encourage them to act, click here.