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The Latest: SC gov: Merger deal ‘best of a bad situation’

FILE - In this Sept. 21, 2016, file photo, V.C. Summer Nuclear Station's unit two's turbine is under construction near Jenkinsville, S.C., during a media tour of the facility. The Public Service Commission will determine at a meeting on Friday, Dec. 14, 2018 how much to cut rates for 737,000 South Carolina Electric & Gas customers who have already paid more than $2 billion for a pair of nuclear reactors abandoned during construction. (AP Photo/Chuck Burton, File)

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — The Latest on South Carolina regulators’ votes on issues concerning the fallout from a $9 billion nuclear construction project failure (all times local):

4:20 p.m.

South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster says state regulators did their best to resolve a mess in approving a merger between a troubled South Carolina utility and Virginia-based Dominion Energy.

McMaster on Friday expressed confidence the South Carolina Public Service Commission “vigorously sought to make the best of a bad situation” in trying to determine how to deal with the fallout from last summer’s abandonment of the construction of two new nuclear reactors.

Commissioners voted Friday to OK Dominion’s roughly $15 billion cash and stock bid to buy SCANA, the parent company of South Carolina Electric & Gas. The deal approved by commissioners would cut customer rates by about $22 a month.

Ratepayers have already paid more than $2 billion for a pair of nuclear reactors abandoned during construction last summer.

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2:45 p.m.

South Carolina regulators have approved a deal to rescue a utility company reeling in the wake of a multibillion-dollar nuclear construction failure.

The Public Service Commission voted Friday to OK Dominion Energy’s roughly $15 billion cash and stock bid to buy SCANA, the parent company of South Carolina Electric & Gas.

The deal approved by commissioners would cut customer rates by about $22 a month.

Ratepayers have already paid more than $2 billion for a pair of nuclear reactors abandoned during construction last summer.

Privately-owned SCANA and its minority partner, state-owned Santee Cooper, gave up on the project after a decade of planning and building following the bankruptcy of lead contractor Westinghouse.

Commissioners decided not to adopt an amendment ruling that SCE&G had lied to them about the project in order to get rate increases.

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1:55 p.m.

A majority of South Carolina regulators say they will vote to approve a deal to rescue a utility company reeling in the wake of a multibillion-dollar nuclear construction failure.

At least five of the seven members of the Public Service Commission said ahead of a vote Friday they support Dominion Energy’s roughly $15 billion cash and stock bid to buy SCANA, the parent company of South Carolina Electric & Gas.

Ratepayers have already paid more than $2 billion for a pair of nuclear reactors abandoned during construction last summer.

Privately-owned SCANA and its minority partner, state-owned Santee Cooper, gave up on the project after a decade of planning and building following the bankruptcy of lead contractor Westinghouse.

Friday’s meeting was paused briefly to clear the hearing room of protesters holding signs and calling for more solar energy options.

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12:01 a.m.

South Carolina regulators have a couple of billion-dollar decisions Friday.

The Public Service Commission will determine at a 1 p.m. meeting how much to cut rates for 737,000 South Carolina Electric & Gas customers who have already paid more than $2 billion for a pair of nuclear reactors abandoned during construction.

Regulators will also decide whether to approve a roughly $15 billion cash and stock bid from Virginia-based Dominion Energy to buy SCE&G’s parent company SCANA Corp.

It’s a pivotal point in the unraveling of South Carolina’s nuclear debacle which started in the summer of 2017 when privately-owned SCANA and its minority partner, state-owned Santee Cooper, gave up on the reactors they had spent a decade planning and building about an hour outside of Columbia.

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