The following information regards the Cook vs. SCPSA settlement.
- I noticed a credit on my bill (or, I got a check in the mail) for something related to a class action settlement. What’s that about?
A class-action lawsuit was filed in 2017 following the failure of the construction project for two nuclear units at the V.C. Summer Nuclear Generating Station in Fairfield County. Santee Cooper and SCE&G (now Dominion Energy) were the owners of the project.
The lawsuit argued that consumers should not have to pay for the nearly $9 billion in costs sunk into the failed project and essentially lost with nothing to show for it. Your cooperative was not a party to the case, but your rights were affected [NOTE: Palmetto was a party, so Palmetto should delete this sentence.]
Before the lawsuit went to trial, the parties came to an agreement and settled the suit. The settlement agreement called for $520 million to be refunded to customers of Santee Cooper and the electric cooperatives.
- How were the credits issued?
Cooperative members who were due $25 or more got a check in the mail. Cooperative members whose credit was less than $25 got a credit on their electricity bill.
- Did the cooperatives—and specifically my cooperative—own part of the failed nuclear units?
No. But our power supplier, Central Electric Power Cooperative, buys a lot of the power we use from Santee Cooper. And Central was required to pay for part of the construction project while it was ongoing. So, Central and Berkeley Electric Cooperative’s members are due some of the settlement funds that are being refunded. That’s why you’re getting a refund.
- Is the bill credit I got this month all there is?
The refund or payment you received represents about 70% of the refund amount coming to you. A second credit or payment for the remaining 30% will be applied in the fall of 2022—a couple of years from now. That’s the way the plan was set up by the court. We don’t have control over the timing.
- My bill credit sure was small. Why so little?
Refunds were calculated based on how much electricity you purchased during a specific time period up through January 31, 2020. So, if you were only a member for a short amount of time before last December, you really didn’t pay much for the nuclear plant’s construction.
- Why didn’t I get any refund?
The class in the class-action lawsuit included only those people who were members through January 31, 2020. So, if you came online with the cooperative in 2020, you did not have charges in your electric bill inside the class period.
- How was my amount calculated?
Your share of the settlement was based on your power usage, but Berkeley Electric Cooperative did not perform the final calculation. That was between the court and the firm hired to administer the settlement, a firm called Epiq (pronounced eh’-pic), a global firm in the legal services industry.
If you have any questions regarding the administration of the Settlement, you may contact the Settlement Administrator.
Please include your name and your return address on all correspondence.
- Cook v. SCPSA, Class Action Administrator, P.O. Box 3127, Portland, OR 97208-3127
- 1-833-947-0894 (Toll-Free)