BRADENTON – Fees that allow energy companies to charge in advance for nuclear plants that may never be built are almost universally loathed by voters. This week, a Florida House Democrat filed a proposed constitutional amendment that would prevent utilities from charging customers until the facilities are operational.
HJR 693, filed by Rep. Dwight Dudley (D-St. Pete), aims to eradicate a controversial 2006 law that allows utility companies like Florida Power & Light and Duke Energy to collect hundreds of millions of dollars from customers in "recovery fees" for nuclear projects.
The biggest controversy over the policy is the fact that the companies get to keep the money, even if the plants are never built. Most recently, Duke canceled plans to build two nuclear plants in Levy County after collecting millions of dollars for the project.
Dudley has been one of many opponents of the law in the state legislature.