Saturday, April 13, 2013

NC Supreme Court Overturns Duke Energy Rate Hike


The North Carolina Supreme Court ruled Friday that the state Utilities Commission did not adequately consider the negative impact on consumers by allowing Duke to raise electricity rates for 1.8 million households and businesses by 7.2 percent. The commission voted in January 2012 to allow the rate increase, which would generate an extra $309 million in annual revenue for Duke.

The rate package Duke proposed included a 10.5 percent profit for the company's subsidiary operating in the western half of the state, pushing the typical residential bill up by $84 a year to almost $1,236. While hundreds of consumers objected that the requested increase would pile misery atop high unemployment and home foreclosures, the utilities commission's order approving the lower rate increase didn't indicate what, if any, weight the oversight board gave those concerns.

Read more here:

Friday, April 12, 2013

PURC Issues Report on Qualifications of PSC Candidates

The State Regulation of Public Utilities Review Committee found the following candidates qualified and nominated them to run for seats on the Public Service Commission:

Seat 1:   

David Cannon

John  E. "Butch"  Howard

Carolynn "Carolee" Williams

Seat 3:   

Comer H. "Randy" Randall

Seat 5:   

Sarah B. Nuckles

Headen B. Thomas

Swain E. Whitfield

Seat 7:   

Gordon  "O'Neal" Hamilton

Dale K. Surrett

Candidates may not ask for or receive commitments from members of the General Assembly before  12:00 noon, Saturday, April 13, 2013.  
Click here for a copy of the report.

Sixth Circuit: TracFone Must Pay Kentucky 911 fees

The Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals has affirmed a District Court ruling that Kentucky Law requires prepaid wireless provider TacFone Wireless, Inc. to pay fees for enhanced emergency 911 service. See a summary and download the opinion on

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Water main break affecting Chapin customers - The State

City crews are responding to a water main break in the Chapin area, after a contractor hit a water main.
A boil water advisory is in effect. The water can be made safe for drinking and cooking by boiling it for one full minute. Also, any ice made from water that has not been boiled should not be used for drinking purposes.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

‘Obama phones’ subsidy program draws new scrutiny on the Hill - The Washington Post

There are growing calls in Congress to end or drastically cut back Lifeline; later this month, the House Energy and Commerce Committee will hold a hearing that could help determine its fate.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Dual Party Relay Fund Petition Placed on Supplemental Agenda

The PSC has placed on the Supplemental Agenda for its meeting on April 10, 2013 at 2pm a petition and request for expedited review filed by the Office of Regulatory Staff to address a deficit in the Dual Party Relay Fund (DPRF). see PSC Docket 2013-124-C.

According to the petition, the DPRF pays for Real-Time Closed Captioning,Instructional Closed Captioning, SC Equipment Distribution Program ("EDP")Administration, SC General Assembly Closed Captioning, SC EDP Equipment, and Relay Service.  The petition states that the fund's balance has declined to due the decline in residential access lines and a corresponding decline in the revenue derived from the line surcharge which funds the DPRF.

The ORS has requested guidance from the PSC as to whether line access charges should be increased, funding to programs should be reduced, or program areas should be eliminated.

Duke Energy to host community open house in Anderson » Anderson Independent Mail

— Duke Energy is inviting customers in Anderson County to an open house on Tueday, when the company can hear from residents and discuss its programs in South Carolina. The open house will be set up similar to a health fair, with an open layout and information stations staffed by experts from Duke Energy. These representatives will answer questions on everything from billing and lighting to tree trimming and energy efficiency. The event will be held from 4 to 7 p.m. At the Civic Center of Anderson at 3027 MLK Jr. Blvd. For more information about the company, visit

NRC to meet with Duke Energy on fire, flood risks at nuke plant | The Greenville News |

Mary Orndorff Troyan, Washington bureau
Nuclear Regulatory Commission staffers will receive an update Tuesday on Duke Energy’s earlier declaration that the risk of a Jocassee Dam failure is not a credible threat to the safe operation of its nuclear power plant on Lake Keowee. The NRC hasn’t decided if it agrees with that assessment.On Wednesday, Duke Energy officials return to the NRC to explain their plan for finishing new fire safety systems that are long overdue. The NRC is considering sanctions against the company for missing a Jan. 1 deadline.

Monday, April 8, 2013

US study: Energy-efficient houses cut mortgage defaults by a third [fr]

According to the paper, reduced utility costs from energy saving measures provide home-buyers with enough capital to avoid repayment problems that often result in repossessions. Home foreclosures in the US have soared since the 2008 global financial crisis, whose ripple effects are still being felt in Europe today.

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