Utilities, Ratepayer Advocates Agree To Modifications Of San Onofre Settlement

Friday, September 19, 2014
By City News Service

Utilities and ratepayer advocates trying to figure out who will pay what for the retirement of the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station have agreed to modifications proposed by the California Public Utilities Commission, the CPUC announced Friday.

Two weeks ago, a commissioner and the agency's administrative law judges ruled that the costs proposed in a deal reached in April placed too much of a burden on consumers.

In a filing Friday with the CPUC, majority owner and operator Southern California Edison, San Diego Gas & Electric, The Utility Reform Network, the Office of Ratepayer Advocates, Friends of the Earth and the Coalition of California Utility Employees said they still believe the original cost-sharing agreement met the agency's criteria.

The organizations went on to say that it would best serve the public interest to end the proceedings soon, so they would accept the proposed modifications.

"I am very pleased that the parties agreed to the changes that I and the administrative law judges proposed, which we felt were necessary in order to protect the public interest," said CPUC Commissioner Mike Florio.

The nuclear plant on the northern San Diego County coastline has been idle since a small, non-injury leak in January 2012. Subsequent investigations placed the blame on steam generators made by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries of Japan installed only a few years earlier.

Edison shelved restart plans in June 2013 in favor of retiring the reactors.

According to the CPUC, the settling parties will issue an amended agreement by Wednesday. The agency's commissioners would then schedule a hearing to consider the plan in October.