Virginia-based Dominion Energy is offering additional long-term savings to beleaguered South Carolina ratepayers in connection with its bid to purchase crony capitalist Cayce, S.C.-based utility SCANA.
According to a new filing submitted this week to the embattled S.C. Public Service Commission (SCPSC) – a.k.a. the final hurdle for Dominion’s $15 billion proposed acquisition of SCANA – an “alternative levelized customer benefits plan” offered by the company would result in long-term savings virtually identical to the proposal passed earlier this year by state lawmakers.
Specifically, the deal would result in a 15 percent reduction in typical residential power bills from their May 2017 levels – locking in the typical rate at $125.26 per month. By contrast, the legislative compromise approved back in June would lower bills to approximately $125.34 per month.
From the company’s filing …
(Click to view)
“The typical residential bill under (the latest plan) would be 15 percent below the May 2017 rate and slightly below the (legislative) level,” said Prabir Purohit, director of mergers and acquisitions at Dominion.
Translation? Lawmakers who were opposed to the Dominion deal on the grounds that it artificially inflated power bills over time have lost their primary talking point. Not only that, Dominion can now argue that its long-term rate is lower.
Here is the complete filing …
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The bad news associated with this latest proposal? Like the Dominion 2.0 plan unveiled late last month, this proposal also takes all $1.3 billion of the envisioned ratepayer rebates and plows that money into long-term savings.
In other words, ratepayers who were bilked by SCANA over the past decade will see partial credits over time as opposed to being rebated a chunk of what was taken from them in one lump sum.
That is exactly what lawmakers have consistently demanded, however one staunch anti-Dominion legislator – S.C. Senate majority leader Shane Massey – continued to excoriate the company.
“This might have been acceptable nine months ago … but experience of the last several months convinces me Dominion will be bad for South Carolina, regardless of the rate,” Massey tweeted.
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