Today was a big day for all SCE&G ratepayers (many of whom reside in our district). The House took up and passed overwhelmingly H4375 to repeal the base load review act and immediately reduce rates for consumers by rolling back rate increases over the last decade. SCE&G raised rates 9 times on consumers since the Base Load Review Act was passed and made into law in 2007. These rate hikes were equivalent to 19.52% increases on the consumer. When you look at the financials of SCE&G’s parent company, SCANA, a publicly traded utility, you will find that its financials are strong. While ratepayers shelled out more than $1.8B over the last few years to pay for the VC Summer Nuclear Plant, SCANA stockholders raked in about $2.5B in cash dividends and the company itself has seen cash positive annual revenues of ~$450M plus. The money was there. It always was. I believe this was a step forward to saving ratepayers thousands of dollars in the future and shifting the burden away from ratepayers back to the utility. Will we ever get our money back? I hope so – that’s certainly my objective in all of this. But today we saved the end-user $37M per month that SCE&G would have continued to bill had we not repealed the BLRA.
What’s missing in all of this? Santee Cooper. This issue is near and dear to everyone in our district and I will continue to communicate with y’all on where we are in this process.