Judge: Duke Energy doesn't owe $350 million for scuttled nuclear plant

Plant Vogtle construction project August 2016 progress

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — A federal judge has ruled Duke Energy doesn't have to pay $350 million sought by Westinghouse Electric Co. over scuttled plans to build a nuclear plant in Florida.

The ruling on Dec. 22 by U.S. District Judge Max Cogburn says Duke Energy owes $34 million in fees and interest for ending the contract for Westinghouse to design and build the Levy County plant.

But Cogburn ruled the additional $352 million sought by Westinghouse fell outside of agreed-upon termination costs in that contract. He said that amounted to development costs for nuclear power technology from a separate agreement that Duke Energy lawfully exited.

The Levy County deal was struck in 2008 by Progress Energy, which Duke later bought. The contract was formally ended in 2014 after problems with federal licenses.

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