Best Reason to Thank the AARP

Public outcry leads to smaller SCE&G rate hike

Staff Pick

Last year, the public utility company S.C. Electric & Gas almost got away with perpetrating a 6.61 percent rate hike on its customers. But after people found out that part of the increase would be used to fund Zumba fitness classes, steak dinners at Ruth’s Chris, and a private club on Sullivan’s Island for SCE&G employees, consumers got justifiably pissed off and took their case up with the state’s Public Service Commission. The AARP rallied members to show up in droves at public hearings and shame the utility company with talk of hot summers and fixed incomes. The retirees joined a motley crew of malcontents that included the Department of the Navy, Time Warner Cable, the S.C. Small Business Chamber of Commerce, and even Walmart. In the end, SCE&G got approval for a smaller rate increase, with a net impact to customers of about 1.38 percent.
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