Columbia, S.C. – As South Carolina continues to grapple with the energy debacle caused by two of the state’s largest utilities, former U.S. Representative and member of the South Carolina House of Representatives Gresham Barrett announced today that the Palmetto Energy Coalition (PEC) has formed to bring diverse constituencies together to seek a long-term, economically viable solution to the future energy challenges faced by South Carolina residents and businesses.
Under the leadership of Chairman Gresham Barrett, the Palmetto Energy Coalition will work to provide a voice for South Carolina residents and businesses in the energy debate as they demand relief from paying for the poor decisions of Santee Cooper and SCANA that have cost the state and its taxpayers billions of dollars.
“South Carolinians deserve affordable and reliable energy sources that don’t burden consumers, that create jobs and that positively contribute to the state’s economy,” said Gresham Barrett, Chairman of the Palmetto Energy Coalition. “It’s time for lawmakers to take action to protect consumers by allowing Santee Cooper to be sold, getting the SC government out of the business of owning and running a utility and bringing new jobs and economic investment to the state.”
More than 6,500 South Carolinians have signed a petition in support of “an energy solution that gets South Carolina residents and businesses off the hook from paying the debt from the V.C. Summer nuclear debacle” by selling Santee Cooper to a utility with a strong record of reliable service and low rates. A survey of 1,000 registered voters from across the state reveals that more than 80 percent of South Carolinians believe the government should govern and leave running utilities to businesses that are experts in the field. More information on South Carolina polling results can be found here.
“We urge our legislators to do the right thing for South Carolina’s energy future and South Carolina’s citizens and provide relief from paying SCANA / SCE&G for a nuclear facility that they will never finish, sell Santee Cooper to a utility with a reliable record for service and lower rates and strengthen our state’s utility oversight bodies, the Public Service Commission and the Office of Regulatory Staff, versus continuing with the state-owned utility that got us into this mess,” concluded Rep. Barrett.
For more information on the coalition, visit http://www.palmettoenergycoalition.org/.