Three days before South Carolina lawmakers sent a letter to the state’s top cop seeking an investigation into the Palmetto State’s #NukeGate debacle, a top deputy in the office of S.C. attorney general Alan Wilson made a similar request.
Chief deputy attorney general Jeffery Young sent a letter dated last Friday (September 22) to S.C. State Law Enforcement Division (SLED) chief Mark Keel asking his agency to assign resources to investigate “possible criminal violations of various types with regard to the recent abandonment of projects at the V.C. Summer Nuclear Station in Fairfield County.”
Young’s letter requested that “an agent or agents be assigned to investigate these potential violations,” and asked them to coordinate their efforts with Creighton Waters, an assistant deputy attorney general in Wilson’s office.
Here is a copy of the letter …
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Robert Kittle – a spokesman for Wilson – told us his office’s request for “investigative support” comes after an extended period of internal investigation of the #NukeGate debacle.
“We have been investigating this situation for several weeks now,” Kittle told us.
The letter to SLED also comes as the attorney general’s office is in the process of finishing an opinion regarding the constitutionality of a state law that paved the way for this disaster. That law – the now-notorious “Base Load Review Act” of 2007 – allowed publicly traded power company SCANA and government-owned utility Santee Cooper to raise rates on consumers to subsidize portions of their investment risk.
Together, the two utilities spent the past decade collaborating on a pair of next-generation nuclear reactors in Jenkinsville, S.C. This expansion of the V.C. Summer nuclear power station was supposed to have been operational a year ago at a cost of $9.8 billion. The money was spent, but the reactors were never finished. Or even half-finished. Not only that, estimates indicate they could cost another $9-16 billion to complete.
Unable to pony up its share of that amount, on July 31 Santee Cooper pulled the plug on the deal … killing an estimated 5,600 jobs, squandering billions of dollars in investment (including more than $2 billion raised through rate increases on consumers), throwing the state’s energy future into chaos, costing the government utility its credit rating and prompting a class action lawsuit against SCANA.
Documents released earlier this month revealed the utilities knew over a year-and-a-half ago the project was doomed – yet continued to raise rates on consumers anyway.
State lawmakers have been doing their best to whitewash their culpability in this matter – efforts we have been exposing from the very beginning. Of course their machinations were doomed to fail considering that many of the Senators and representatives currently “investigating” this disaster are directly responsible for bringing it about.
Also exposed by the scandal? Former S.C. governor Mark Sanford, who allowed the controversial “Base Load Review Act” to become law.
In addition to any state-level criminal inquiry into this debacle, agents working for the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) are also investigating both SCANA and Santee Cooper (news of which was exclusively reported by this website).
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Banner via S.C. Attorney General’s Office