The former top executive over Georgia Power’s Plant Vogtle construction engaged in “deliberate misconduct” when he ousted a contract employee in part for raising safety concerns, according to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
Mark Rauckhorst, executive vice president for the Vogtle project, retired from Georgia Power sister company Southern Nuclear Operating Company in 2018, according to a company spokesman. The dismissal of the contract worker occurred in late 2015.
Both Rauckhorst and the company say no NRC regulations were violated.
This marks the second instance where the NRC has faulted a Vogtle senior executive for dismissing a worker who had in previous years raised safety issues on the project, which is years behind schedule and billions of dollars over budget.
The two new reactors south of Augusta are now slated to go into commercial operation by November of 2021 and 2022. But in a filing on Friday, staff and consultants for the Georgia Public Service Commission expressed doubts about whether those dates can be met.