Tuesday, November 21, 2017
Business

Political ad attacks Scott for failing to stop Duke's nuclear charges

RECOMMENDED READING


Duke Energy's failed nuclear ambitions became political fodder in the gubernatorial race Friday with an attack ad blasting Gov. Rick Scott for doing nothing to stop the utility from charging customers for its blunders.

It was the first time that Duke's troubles entered into a statewide political fray.

The ad, airing in the bay area and sponsored by NextGen Climate Action Committee, points to reports from the Tampa Bay Times about the $3.2 billion customers are paying for the botched upgrade at the now-shuttered Crystal River nuclear plant and canceled Levy County nuclear project.

"Florida fleeced by Duke Energy," the ad states. "Rick Scott knew, but he's letting Duke Energy keep collecting billions anyway. Shocking.

"Not so shocking: the half-million dollars Scott's campaign got from Duke Energy."

Billionaire Tom Steyer created the NextGen Climate group to raise money in support of Charlie Crist's gubernatorial run. The group said in a statement it wanted to highlight, "Scott's record of financially bene­fitting from wealthy donors — standing with corporate energy interests at the expense of Florida's kids, health and economy."

The Scott campaign said it was reviewing the ad and preparing a statement.

Nicole LeBeau, a Duke spokeswoman, said it's the utility's policy not to respond to political ads.

While Scott did not publicly speak out about Duke's nuclear mishaps, it was not his decision to pass the costs to ratepayers.

Duke ran up billions in costs for the Crystal River and Levy projects largely because of a 2006 law that allows utilities to charge customers in advance for increasing nuclear power, dubbed the "advance fee."

The state Public Service Commission, whose five members are appointed by the governor, approved the charges despite the reality that customers never will receive a kilowatt of power from either nuclear project.

The Legislature and Scott could have repealed the advance fee, but lawmakers have refused to do so over the past several years.

Scott has largely remained silent on utility issues. Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam became the state's point person on energy matters, and he initially defended the nuclear advance fee.

But he later called at least the Crystal River botched upgrade "a whale of a mess."

Contact Ivan Penn at [email protected] or (727) 892-2332. Follow @Consumers_Edge.

Comments
Barricades reinforce security for holiday events on St. Petersburg’s downtown waterfront

Barricades reinforce security for holiday events on St. Petersburg’s downtown waterfront

Times Staff Writer ST. PETERSBURG — World and national tragedies are changing the city’s approach to security for special events at North Straub Park.With the approach of the holidays, concrete barricades have been erected at a section of the park’s ...
Updated: 12 minutes ago
Eight women say Charlie Rose sexually harassed them - with nudity, groping and lewd calls

Eight women say Charlie Rose sexually harassed them - with nudity, groping and lewd calls

Eight women have told the Washington Post that longtime television host Charlie Rose made unwanted sexual advances toward them, including lewd phone calls, walking around naked in their presence, or groping their breasts, buttocks or genital areas.Th...
Updated: 12 hours ago
St. Petersburg council okays restaurant deal for Manhattan Casino

St. Petersburg council okays restaurant deal for Manhattan Casino

ST. PETERSBURG — The City Council on Monday approved a lease for the Manhattan Casino, a landmark building in the city’s historic African-American business and entertainment community.It was a controversial decision for some of the city’s black resid...
Updated: 12 hours ago
Tampa Electric, contractor fined $43,000 in gas leak

Tampa Electric, contractor fined $43,000 in gas leak

APOLLO BEACH — The federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration fined Tampa Electric $18,108 and gave the company two "serious" citations for its response to a gas leak at the Big Bend Power Station in May, the agency announced late Friday.T...
Published: 11/20/17
Forecast: Florida retailers expect strong holiday shopping sales

Forecast: Florida retailers expect strong holiday shopping sales

‘Tis the season for holiday shopping, and this year is expected to be particularly kind to retailers.The Florida Retail Federation’s holiday shopping forecast predicts that a combination of high consumer confidence, strong tourism numbers and a littl...
Published: 11/20/17
Up for sale? Activist investor grabs stake in Tampa’s Bloomin’ Brands

Up for sale? Activist investor grabs stake in Tampa’s Bloomin’ Brands

TAMPA — If you tread water too long in the same spot, someone might start asking why you’re not trying to swim somewhere.Tampa’s Bloomin’ Brands — parent company of such prominent restaurant chains as Outback Steakhouse, Carrabba’s Italian Grill and ...
Published: 11/20/17
Glenn Thrush, New York Times reporter, accused of sexual misbehavior

Glenn Thrush, New York Times reporter, accused of sexual misbehavior

The New York Times said Monday that it was suspending Glenn Thrush, one of its most prominent reporters, after he was accused of sexually inappropriate behavior.The move came after the website Vox published a report containing allegations that Thrus...
Published: 11/20/17
Most air travelers say taking off your shoes is okay. An etiquette expert disagrees

Most air travelers say taking off your shoes is okay. An etiquette expert disagrees

Unless you are ensconced in first class, sleeping on a plane is as intimate as dozing off in a waiting room on jury duty — everyone on the aircraft knows the decibel level of your snoring and the sad state of your socks.To gauge how passengers percei...
Published: 11/20/17
Senator Nelson on tax reform bill: Small business will ‘get it in the neck.’

Senator Nelson on tax reform bill: Small business will ‘get it in the neck.’

TAMPA — A week ahead of the expected vote on a controversial tax reform bill, U.S. Sens. Bill Nelson and Ron Wyden, D-Ore., visited Tampa to deliver a message to small businesses: This bill will hurt you."Small businesses are the economic engine of F...
Updated: 8 hours ago

Stolen car crashes in St. Pete, leaving passenger, 15, with life threatening injuries

Two boys in a stolen car struck a dip in the roadway and crashed into a tree, leaving the 15-year-old passenger with life-threatening injuries, St. Petersburg police said.The crash occurred about 11:25 a.m. Sunday as the car sped west on 11th Avenue ...
Published: 11/19/17
Updated: 11/20/17