Entergy refund in the works over Waterford 3 ‘mistake’

Regulators say $140M over run is company’s cost

Entergy Louisiana LLC is crunching the numbers on how much it will repay its 1 million customers on a $140 million cost overrun to replace defective generators at Waterford 3 in Montz.

The move followed an intensifying, months-long debate with the Louisiana Public Service Commission (LPSC) over who should be responsible for this cost. LPSC maintains it was a company mistake that Entergy should cover, while Entergy maintained it was the cost of making energy and passed it on as a surcharge to customers beginning in January 2013.

“As of now, the LPSC is undertaking that review and determining how much of the project’s costs should be refunded to customers,” said Entergy spokeswoman Amber Ferchaud. She added Entergy also is “in process of discussing with stakeholders how much we’ll give to customers regarding Waterford 3 repairs. We don’t know how much yet.”

Entergy’s commercial customers, including Valero and Dow with operations in St. Charles Parish, also opposed passing on the Waterford 3 “mistake” directly to them.

The delay caused by replacing the faulty generators pushed total project cost to $651 million, upping cost by $140 million.

Ferchaud said the generators and other equipment at Waterford 3 were replaced in spring of 2011. Entergy customers began paying for the fix shortly after the generators went operational in the fall of 2012.

Entergy also asked for LPSC approval to proceed with its planned $869 million power natural gas-powered plant, also in Montz, as well as to pass on another fee directly to customers on this project.

Ferchaud said the LPSC is anticipated to decide the power plant’s future at its Sept. 21 meeting.

The energy provider plans to build a 980-megawatt, natural gas fired plant on land adjacent the Little Gypsy power plant. Construction is planned to begin in third quarter this year, pending  LPSC approval

Entergy plans call for it being operational by mid-2019.

About Anna Thibodeaux 1967 Articles
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