A lot of attention is being focused on the General Assembly as it deals with a proposal that would lead to AmerenUE – the state’s largest electric utility – to build a second nuclear power plant in Callaway County in Mid-Missouri. But the Nuclear Regulatory Commission has to approve the idea or the Legislature’s actions mean very little.
NRC Spokesman Victor Dricks says information on such things as environmental concerns was collected, recently, at a pair of public hearings in Fulton and will be studied before being put into what is known as an Environmental Impact Statement. Ameren cannot proceed until it gets clearance from the NRC. And it could be three or four years before that happens.
At the State Capitol, the Legislature is considering a proposal to change the Construction Work in Progress law to allow Ameren to charge ratepayers for the costs of the second nuclear plant while the facility is still under construction. The legislation faces several hurdles in both the Senate and the House as well as concerns expressed by Governor Jay Nixon.