Survey finds Connecticut residents oppose subsidy for Millstone nuclear power plant

By Phil Hall

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A new survey has found that Connecticut residents want to review financial documents from the owner of the Millstone Nuclear Power Plant in Waterford before agreeing to a state subsidy to cover the facility’s operating costs.

According to an AARP Connecticut survey of 800 residents age 45 and older, 87 percent of respondents insisted that the plant’s owner, Richmond, Va.-based Dominion Power, provide customers and state legislators with financial reports that will affirm the Millstone facility is operating at a loss. But even that might not be enough to sway opinions – 55 percent of respondents opposed any state subsidy to Dominion, even if the company demonstrated it was running Millstone at a loss, and 78 percent felt that any approved subsidy should be funded by all of the New England states served by the plant and not just by Connecticut taxpayers.

Furthermore, most respondents were not pleased over the prospect of an electric bill surcharge to cover the costs of a potential subsidy. Fifty-five percent opposed a surcharge as low as $3 a month, while 60 percent were against a $5 surcharge, 68 percent rejected an $8 increase and 74 percent gave a thumbs-down to a $10 hike.

“The survey further demonstrates the concerns of Connecticut voters that these requests from power companies do not reflect the best interests of the ratepayers,” said AARP Connecticut Advocacy Director John Erlingheuser. “Dominion forcing a subsidy onto Connecticut residents will have a wide-ranging impact on consumers – which are already burdened with one of the highest costs for electricity among all states. AARP echoes the sentiments of other consumer advocates, and Connecticut voters, that Dominion Power should have to disclose their losses and or profits before any decisions are made.”

According to Dominion, Millstone is the source of nearly half of Connecticut’s electrical power.

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About the author

Phil Hall
Phil Hall is a former United Nations-based reporter for Fairchild Broadcast News, the author of seven books, the host of the SoundCloud podcast "The Online Movie Show" and a writer with credits in The New York Times, New York Daily News and Wired.

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