From the AP:
Georgia Power still plans to increase rates next year to finance two new nuclear reactors at Plant Vogtle despite billions of dollars in federal loan guarantees announced Tuesday by the Obama administration.Georgia Power spokesman Jeff Wilson said any savings the utility will see from the federal loan backing won’t occur until January 2012. That means ratepayers will see their electric bills rise by an average of $1.30 a month in 2011 as planned, he said.
The Obama administration said the nuclear plant near Augusta had been selected to receive more than $8 billion in federal loan guarantees. The expansion at Vogtle will mark the first nuclear power plant construction in the United States in nearly three decades.
The two new reactors are scheduled to be completed in 2017 at a price tag of $14 billion.
Last year, the Georgia Legislature approved a bill allowing Georgia Power to begin charging ratepayers for the expansion at Plant Vogtle some six years before the first of the two new reactors is set to go online. Under the bill, which was signed into law by Gov. Sonny Perdue, the rates will gradually step up until ratepayers are paying an additional $9.10 a month in 2017.
The new law allows Georgia Power, a subsidiary of Southern Co., to begin to collect some $1.6 billion in financing and shareholder equity costs early.
[Read more at the AP]