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Clinton Council meets in private about electric rate issue w-update

Agenda says some action is possible


The Clinton City Council will meet TONIGHT in a closed to the public executive session to discuss something called "economiv development energy rates" in the aftermath of a settlement of lawsuits among the electric-cities members of Piedmont Municipal Power Agency.

The Greer-based agency includes Clinton, Laurens CPW and Newberry, and since, 2019, it has been involved in litigation that threaten to dismantle the organization responsible for providing electricity, generated by nuclear power, to thousands of people. That litigation has been settle with a pay-out of $55 Million scheduled to be made by PMPA to two cities.

At 6 pm tonight (Monday, Jan. 29) Clinton City Council meets in a called session which already has been labeled an executive session (the SC Freedom of Information Act sets guidelines for closed to the public sessions) to discuss the economic development issue. Presumably, it is a contract. The called meeting is in the council chambers of the municipal center and the open portions of the meeting will be available for viewing on the City's Facebook Page.

It is unclear if these decision will affect how much residences and businesses pay for electricity.



Piedmont Municipal Power Agency (PMPA) announces that the litigation among its participants, including the City of Clinton, concerning cost allocation has been settled. 

The litigation dates to 2019 and stemmed from a disagreement about the allocation of cost among the participants of PMPA’s ownership and operation of the Catawba Nuclear Station Unit 2 located in York County. 

Defendants in the case, Greer Commission of Public Works and the City of Rock Hill, asserted they were paying more of the cost of Catawba than they were contractually required. PMPA and the other participants disagreed. 

After several mediation attempts and a Summary Judgement hearing that provided no resolution, the participants agreed that settling this disagreement and moving on to address larger issues of electric power supply was more important than waiting for a trial. 

The settlement consists of Greer CPW and City of Rock Hill receiving a combined cash payment of $55 million, with all disputes and cost allocation claims being dismissed, and the current All Requirements wholesale power rate structure remaining in place through 2028. The $55 million will be paid using a combination of PMPA working capital and debt financing. 

Debt service on the settlement financing will be paid by all other participants of PMPA, including Climton and the Laurens CPW, but excluding Greer CPW and the City of Rock Hill. 

PMPA Board Chairman Blake Stone, who represents the City of Abbeville, offered the following statement: “This settlement allows PMPA to move forward in its mission of providing wholesale power supply and other power supply related services to its participants. Electric utilities in our area are facing the challenges of providing reliable, affordable, low carbon energy to their growing customer base. With this litigation now behind us, PMPA can begin the important work of securing our energy future utilizing PMPA’s Catawba Nuclear asset.” 

PMPA was created by its ten member utilities and provides wholesale electric services for those communities. Through its member utilities, the agency services over 100,000 electric customers in the upstate of South Carolina. 

The lawsuit has cost the City of Clinton more than $300,000 in legal fees, Mayor Randy Randall told The Laurens County Advertiser, not counting what Clinton’s share of the debt service on the $55 Million payment from PMPA will be.

PMPA Background here.

A 2019 vote here.