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PSC Approves Change on Lifeline Telephone Service; Approves Plant Vogtle Expenditures

By   /   October 16, 2013  /   Comments

Special to the Journal

ATLANTA, October 15, 2013 – The Georgia Public Service Commission
(Commission) today approved by a majority 3-2 vote a revised rule
proposed by Commissioner Doug Everett that would affect telephone
service provided under the federal Lifeline program in Docket 35537.

The rule would require telecommunications companies offering the
Lifeline discount to either: 1. Bill and collect a $5.00 per month
charge from each Lifeline subscriber for participating in the program;
or 2. Provide eligible customers a minimum of 500 minutes of use per
month. The NOPR eliminates the previously adopted requirement of photo
identification for all Lifeline applicants. The revised rule takes
effect on January 31, 2014 in order to provide telecommunications
providers time to implement it.

“I proposed this rule to reduce fraud, waste and abuse in the Lifeline
discount program” said Commissioner Everett, “I want to make sure this
program is done right and I believe this new rule will accomplish that
goal and keep the program viable for those who truly need it.”

In other action, the Commission verified and approved the construction
expenditures on the Georgia Power Company’s Plant Vogtle construction
project for the period from July 1, 2012 through December 31, 2012 as
part of the Company’s Eighth Semi-Annual Vogtle Construction Monitoring
Report in Docket 29849. The expenditures total $209 million for a
cumulative capital cost of $2.21 billion. The Company had previously
filed a request to amend its certificate for the project in order to
reflect increased costs. However the Stipulation approved by the
Commission on September 3, 2013 postponed the Company’s request until
the completion of Unit 3 which is now tentatively scheduled for late
2017.

Additional information can be found on the Commission web site,
www.psc.state.ga.us.

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