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House Speaker: Change Laws After Nuclear Plant Failure via AP

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — The South Carolina House speaker is proposing six laws aimed at protecting consumers from the consequences of a failed project to build two nuclear reactors.

South Carolina Electric & Gas Co. and the state-owned utility Santee Cooper have sought to insulate themselves from the hemorrhaging costs of their ill-fated joint venture at the V.C. Summer Nuclear Station, which they abandoned on July 31 after Westinghouse, the chief contractor, declared bankruptcy. The utilities had already spent more than $9 billion by then, collecting nearly $2 billion in interest from ratepayers along the way.

House Speaker Jay Lucas of Hartsville announced his proposals on Thursday, saying they would “gut existing laws” that allowed utilities to charge customers before the reactors were complete, and help avoid another expensive construction failure.

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