Nuclear Legislation

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JEFFERSON CITY - The Missouri Senate held a committee hearing Wednesday afternoon on legislation allowing utility companies to charge electric customers for funding needed to construct a new nuclear power plant.

One bill sponsored by Mike Kehoe, R-Callaway County, will allow electric companies to recover up to $45 million of expenses from rate payers to help fund the plant. The money would come from rate hikes and charges through the next 20 years. Kehoe says the project would create 10,000 jobs across the state, and be a huge boost to the economy.

Another piece of legislation sponsored by Jason Crowell, R-Cape Girardeau, would protect energy consumers by capping the amount a utility company can recover from customers at $40 million. The bill also includes a rebate plan in case the plant is never built or doesn't generate electricity.

A house committee already has endorsed a similar measure. A voter-approved law currently bars customers from being charged for a new power plant before the facility starts producing electricity