• 41°

Cost of coal ash cleanup next big issue?

Carter Wrenn, in the blog, Talking About Politics:
When the pollster asked voters, “Who should pay for the coal ash cleanup, Duke Energy or consumers?”, the answer came back loud and clear. Voters had no doubt. Almost to a man they said Duke Energy.
… [A]ny legislator who disagreed was going to have to give voters a good practical or theological or economic or political reason that changed their minds because, otherwise, the moment he said he wanted consumers to pay for the clean-up (in the form of higher electric bills) he’d be committing the political equivalent of walking in front of a firing squad.
The Republicans decided not to give voters a reason to change their minds — and the Democrats didn’t need too.
Because the moment Duke Energy called for higher electric bills, whether Roy Cooper and Company saw that as corporate wolves preying on hapless sheep or whether they, more practically, asked themselves, “Who do we want to stick with the bill — six million voters or one corporation” — they immediately rolled out a law saying Duke should pay every penny. And, a month later, when Duke reported a $600 million quarterly profit, it looked like the Democrats were standing on solid ground.
The Republicans … didn’t say they wanted six million voters to pay for the coal ash cleanup, but they did kill the Democrats’ law dead in its tracks — then passed a law of their own saying Duke Energy couldn’t ask the Utilities Commission for a rate increase for four months (until Jan. 15). …
I reckon that makes it all but certain before long we’re going to see ads saying Republicans sided with Duke Energy — and then Republicans are going to need to give voters a darn good reason why it’s necessary or right or fair for them to pay to clean up the coal ash ponds. Beyond that, in November, when voters troop to the polls there may be just one question left: Which do they dislike more? Obama? Or paying $10 billion more in electric bills?

Comments

Comments closed.

Local

Scout’s Honor: With dedication of flag retirement box, Salem Fleming earns Eagle Scout rank

College

North Carolina king, queen of NCAA lacrosse tourneys

High School

High school football: State’s top honor goes to Jalon Walker

Education

Kannapolis seniors walk elementary schools

Local

Local real estate company employees come out in force to build Habitat house

Local

Quotes of the week

Coronavirus

Auditors find oversight lacking for $3 billion of state’s pandemic aid

Nation/World

When will gas situation return to normal?

Local

Rowan native Shuping posthumously receives Concord Police Department’s Medal of Valor, Purple Heart

News

GOP measure on penalties for rioting draws fire

News

Black high school softball player told to cut hair

Coronavirus

State shows 303 COVID-19 deaths in Rowan

Coronavirus

CDC: Fully vaccinated people can largely ditch masks indoors

Crime

One arrested, another hospitalized in Castor Road stabbing

China Grove

China Grove Roller Mill open for tours Saturday

News

Facing personnel deficiencies, local fire departments request tax rate increases

Local

‘Panic buying’ creates gas supply shortages locally, statewide after pipeline cyberattack

Business

Twice as nice: Planet Smoothie opens alongside Cold Stone Creamery in co-branded store

Local

Spencer board gets update on South Iredell rat problem

Education

West Rowan teacher awarded $15,000 outdoor learning grant

Cleveland

Town of Cleveland plans celebration May 22

High School

High school girls tennis: Busy Hornets win again easily

High School

High school softball: Nixon, Walton top all-county team

Education

All Hood Alumni and Friends Symposium scheduled June 18