Saturday, March 29, 2014

Board Issues CPG to Vermont Yankee through 2014

Public Service Board
David Coen, James Volz, John Burke
A Certificate while pouting

The Public Service Board issued a Certificate of Public Good for Vermont Yankee, to run through the end of 2014.  They did it with their usual insulting snark toward Entergy. As VPR quoted the Board order:

“In its 12 years of operating in Vermont, Entergy VY has failed to comply with numerous board orders and statutory requirements,” the board said. “It has failed to follow procedural requirements that protect the integrity of board proceedings. The company has engaged in unacceptable conduct that erodes public trust and its capacity to act in good faith and to engage in fair dealing.”

The board said that if Entergy had wanted a 20 year license extension, “its track record may well have led us to find that ownership and operation would not promote the general good.”

Why did I quote VPR's quote of the order? Why didn't I quote the order directly myself? Well, frankly, because I haven't read it.  This order is 97 pages long.  Here's a link:

As VPR quoted Shumlin: Gov. Peter Shumlin was also pleased with the decision. “The decision provides certainty and predictability for the hard workers at the plant, over $10 million of economic development funding for the region, and lets us focus on the important work of transitioning to a future after Vermont Yankee..

Well, that is enough for now.  My snark factor is rising, along with my blood pressure.  Gosh, Governor Shumlin cares about the "hard workers at the plant." Yeah, sure!

The Board makes its own bed

I am very glad that the Board ruled in a timely fashion, and they did not attempt to shut down the plant a few months early.
Canada, with Quebec highlighted

From my point of view, the members of the board can now go ahead and enjoy their pouting about Entergy's "unacceptable conduct."  I think the main "unacceptable conduct" was Entergy winning its lawsuits.

Hopefully, this is it. No nuclear plant will ever again have to deal with the Vermont Public Service Board.  Instead, the Board can enjoy trying to control the Canadian companies who supply Vermont's gas and electricity.

Over and out, and more later.


Update: Rod Adams blog post about visiting Vermont Yankee is now also posted at The Energy Collective. It has generated a lively comment stream, including comments from

  • opponents from the Brattleboro area, 
  • Bas Gresnigt,
  • N Nadir, expert and blogger extraordinaire,
  • and several good people who are knowledgable about nuclear energy.

Join the conversation!

Friday, March 28, 2014

Closing Vermont Yankee is a Waste: Rod Adams post

Yesterday, Rod Adams of Atomic Insights visited Vermont Yankee.  His conclusion: Closing this beautiful plant is a waste.

Please read, link-to, and circulate his post!

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Issues and Re-Issues on the way to a CPG for Vermont Yankee

The agreement

In December, Entergy and various state agencies signed an agreement about the final year of Vermont Yankee's operation, lawsuits, payments, and several issues concerning decommissioning.

If the Public Service Board (PSB) acts in favor of this agreement, Vermont Yankee will receive a Certificate of Public Good to operate to the end of this fuel cycle.  You can read more about this agreement in Guy Page's guest post: Reasons the Public Service Board Should Grant an CPG to Vermont Yankee, and my post The Proposed Entergy Settlement is Good for Vermont.

I hope this agreement will be ratified by the Public Service Board.

But the story is always longer and more complex than it first appears.

Issues and Re-Issues

1) Issue: The Ruling and the Timing
According to Section 2 of the Settlement Agreement, there's a March 31 deadline. If the Board does not grant Vermont Yankee a CPG that approves the continued operation of the plant through the end of the fuel cycle, and in accordance with the agreement terms, the agreement may terminate at the discretion of either party.   So we can expect to hear something from the PSB by Monday, March 31.
Re-Issue: BrinksmanshipLast year, when the Board had a deadline about a CPG for emergency diesels for Vermont Yankee, they waited till the last minute to issue the ruling. They played a game of brinksmanship, as I described in A Court Case with a Deadline: The Black Start Diesels.  Are they still playing this game, or will they rule?  We will know by March 31.
2) Issue: The Decommissioning Timing
When the agreement was announced, both sides stated that they had made an agreement on what they could agree upon, but other issues were not resolved. One particular issue is that the state wants fuel moved from the fuel pools as soon as possible, but the state also wants the "real decommissioning" to begin as soon as possible.

So the state wants the fuel to be moved, but no decommissioning funds are to be expended to move it. As I noted in The Fuel Pools: Opponents Say the Darndest Things Attorney General Bill Sorrell plans to "take legal action" if Entergy removes money from the fund in order to move the fuel rods.
Re-Issue: Pre-Emption Sorrell says the state wants a "legal opportunity to be heard on those requests."  In this case, "those requests" are Vermont Yankee requests to the NRC for permission to use decommissioning funds for fuel management. Of course, this is a traditional use of decommissioning funds.   
Does the state truly want to get into a court battle about regulating nuclear operations and safety? Didn't they learn something by losing two court cases?
3) Issue: Will the State Obey the Law?
Okay, let's assume the issues above are resolved nicely.  Let's say that the PSB rules on time, and they rule in substantial agreement with the Settlement Agreement.  Let's say that Attorney General Sorrell finally understands the term "federal jurisdiction over nuclear safety" and decides not to sue if Entergy uses decommissioning funds for decommissioning.  In other words, everything is great.

The question becomes: Will it matter? Will the state live up to its side of the bargain?

Re-Issue: The Shumlin Administration Regularly Breaks Its Own Laws
Earlier this year, John McClaughry wrote comments to the PSB: "Can Entergy Trust the State?" McClaughry explained that when the state passed a law giving the legislature a vote about Vermont Yankee's continued operation, this law was a clear breach of contract with Entergy. The law was a major and one-sided modification of the Memorandum of Understanding that Entergy had signed.  
In my opinion, the state is quite happy to break any law that inconveniences it.  This is not just about Entergy.  Governor Shumlin has been eager to pass a law for single-payer health care, and the law was passed. According to that law, the government had to propose a plan for financing the system, and the plan had to be presented to the legislature by January 15, 2013. It has still not been presented.  Estimates for the cost of the single-payer system range from $1.5 billion to $2.2 billion per year.  There are about 600,000 people in Vermont.  If the cost is $1.8 billion, that is $3000 per citizen.  A rather massive payroll tax has been proposed, and of course, everyone hates that idea.   
When Governor Shumlin was recently asked: "What else can we tax (besides a payroll tax  to finance this)?" Shumlin answered: "bubble gum and lollipops."  I encourage you to read Representative Tom Koch's Op Ed on this subject: A Governor Who is Above the Law.  I
 also recommend Rob Roper's commentary: Irreconcilable Differences in Single Payer Promises.  
Note for those who do not live in Vermont: this is not about the Affordable Care Act.  This is about a single-payer system that the state of Vermont, all by itself, plans to implement.
I don't want to get deep into the weeds of this controversy, but I just want to say that if Shumlin does not obey his own laws (the ones HE wanted to pass) about his own pet project, how is he going to treat the Entergy agreement?

Soon we will know

The PSB should rule by Monday, March 31, or the Settlement Agreement may become null and void.
  • The PSB may rule for the agreement, or they may rule against it, or they may stall and not rule at all.  
  • If they do rule for the agreement, the Attorney General may still sue Entergy for moving spent fuel from the fuel pool, and using the "wrong" money to do so.  
  • If all is well with the PSB ruling and the Attorney General, the state may simply ignore their obligations under the contract.

Welcome to Vermont politics. Stay tuned.  Oh yes.  Stay tuned.


Acknowledgment: John McClaughry and Rob Roper are officers of the Ethan Allen Institute.  I am director of the Energy Education Project which is part of that institute.

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Reasons the Public Service Board Should Approve the CPG for Vermont Yankee: Guest Post by Guy Page of VTEP

Five Reasons Why the Vermont Public Service Board Should Approve
the Certificate of Public Good for Vermont Yankee

A Settlement Agreement announced on December 23, 2013 by Gov. Peter Shumlin, Attorney General William Sorrell, the State of Vermont, and Entergy recommends that the Vermont Public Service Board (PSB) approve the Certificate of Public Good (CPG) for Vermont Yankee to continue to operate until the end of 2014. The plant’s continued operation through the year will help to ensure a smooth transition of Vermont Yankee to a closed, decommissioning power facility. Without approval of the CPG, the Settlement Agreement will likely be nullified. The following are five reasons why the PSB should approve the CPG by its deadline of March 31, 2014.

The proposed CPG…

1. Enjoys broad support and resolves major legal and economic quagmires

Both the State of Vermont and Entergy support the Settlement Agreement and the CPG. Without a CPG, the Vermont Yankee situation will revert to the pre-December 23 status of expensive legal wrangling, job uncertainty for plant employees, no cash for economic development or renewable power, and no agreement on decommissioning.

2. Prompts an accelerated decommissioning and enables enactment of a prompt, detailed decommissioning plan

The agreement establishes the potential for  a more prompt decommissioning and site restoration than would otherwise be required by federal law. Entergy commits to filing a site assessment by December 31, 2014 – many months sooner than required by federal law – and featuring evaluation of the costs of both SAFSTOR (extended) and DECON (more prompt) decommissioning.

3. Will release millions of dollars for site restoration

Within 30 days of the issuance of the CPG, Entergy has agreed to establish a separate site restoration trust fund with an initial deposit of $10 million.  This is the first installment of $25 million that will be provided by 2017.

4. Helps transition Vermont to a renewable energy future

Within 30 days of the issuance of the CPG, Entergy has agreed to contribute $5.2 million into the Vermont Clean Energy Development Fund, with half of this money earmarked for the benefit of Windham County.

5. Provides a boost for the economy

For each of the next five years – 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, and 2018 – Entergy has agreed to pay $2 million per year to the State of Vermont to promote economic development in Windham County. By April 15, 2015, Entergy has agreed to make a $5 million tax payment to the State of Vermont.


The Vermont Energy Partnership ( is a diverse group of more than 90 business, labor, and community leaders committed to finding clean, affordable and reliable electricity solutions.  Its mission is to educate policy makers, the media, businesses, and the general public about why electricity is imperative for prosperity, and about the optimal solutions to preserve and expand our electricity network.  Entergy, owner of Vermont Yankee, is a member of the Vermont Energy Partnership.

Infographic from VTEP, used by permission.

Blog post by Guy Page of VTEP, who is a frequent guest blogger at this blog.

Meredith Angwin's earlier post on this subject is The Proposed Entergy Settlement is Good for Vermont.  

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

The Vernon Police Force: Super Sad True Town Meeting Story

Strafford Meeting House
Strafford Vermont
Super Sad Story True Town Meeting Story

I named this post after a novel I am reading: Super Sad True Love Story, by Gary Shteyngart. Using the novel name for the name of this post isn't as far-fetched as you might think. The Shteyngart novel is set in a high-tech but miserable future.  It is both a novel and a warning.

Similarly, this Super Sad True Town Meeting Story about Vernon is about the difficult Town Meetings in Vernon this year, and the difficult future of the town that is home to Vermont Yankee. (I write a little more about the Shteyngart book and Town Meetings at the end of this post.)

The Vernon Town Meeting, Round One

Vermont Yankee is located in Vernon Vermont, and pays approximately half the real-estate taxes paid in that town.  With the plant closing at the end of this year, Vernon has had to cut back drastically on its budget for future years.

In most towns in Vermont, budgets are decided upon and voted upon in Town Meeting.  Vermont towns have a certain level of choice about when they hold these meetings.  For example, Hartford (my town) used to hold Town Meeting on Town Meeting Day, which is a Tuesday.  However, many people can't get to a Tuesday meeting, and our town now holds its meeting on the Saturday before.

Vernon holds its Town Meeting in the evening. Apparently, the Vernon meeting usually goes for two evenings.  This year, Vernon has held three meetings...and counting. Town Meeting in Vernon is not over yet.

Town and Gown Marathon

Budgets for the town are voted on separately from school budgets.

On the first two days of Vernon Town Meeting, there were discussions of cutting back on the  town budget, with some focus on the costs of the police force.  Within the police budget, discussions centered on eliminating positions and cutting overtime.  Then, in a surprise move late on the second night, the people at Town Meeting voted to abolish the police force.  (Vote was 118 to 112, by paper ballot.)

Instead of having  town police, Vernon will contract for a small amount of police protection from other sources, such as state police.  The new budget allows about $40,000 for this protection, instead of a local police budget of about $300,000.

Meanwhile, the voters simply couldn't pass a school budget.  They turned down the proposed budget, and that whole thing is still in limbo.

After these two nights of town meetings, the voters held a third night of town meetings to deal with leftover stuff, such as changing pension plans and deciding what to do with the money that had been budgeted for new police cruisers.

I recommend some articles:

Police cruiser
New York City, of course, not Vernon
From Wikipedia
The second night of town meeting is well described in this VPR article: Vernon to Meet Again for Town Meeting Part 3

The police chief's view of town safety: Mike Faher at the Brattleboro Reformer writes: After voters make cuts, Vernon chief speaks out 

And, once again, Mike Faher at the Reformer on the third night of the meeting: Vernon town meeting wraps on third night.

But It's Not Over! A Fourth Town Meeting

First of all, the school budget remains in limbo, and something will have to be done about that in the future.

Second, abolishing the police force was a major action, and many people in the town are upset that it was done late at night by a narrow margin.  Townspeople mounted a successful petition drive to reconsider the budget. In other words, there will be a fourth Town Meeting.  As Faher of the Reformer writes: Vernon petitioners get new budget vote.  Quoting the Town Clerk from that article: "The Selectboard will get it, and they have to set a date for a special Town Meeting."

Selectboard Chair Patty O'Donnell notes that the entire budget can be discussed and amended at the new meeting.

Meanwhile, plant opponents spread their joy

The town of Vernon is in fiscal disarray, and people are meeting night after night to determine their future choices.

In contrast, some Vermont Yankee opponents are gleeful.  Here's an extensive quote from a letter to the editor in the Brattleboro Reformer.  The Reformer had the good sense to label this letter Schadenfreude?

Editor of the Reformer:

I’d like to welcome the residents and Town of Vernon back to the regular (unsubsidized) status of the rest of the smaller towns in Windham County. We have no town police departments and use the Windham County Sheriff’s Department out of Newfane and the Vermont State Police who have a barracks in West Brattleboro. .... I realize you’ve felt like you "had it good " for over 40 years and have gotten used to the lowest costs of living in Windham County. But you have also born the burden of potentially highly toxic environment with Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant in your backyard. We’ll all feel safer with it closed..... You can stop complaining about having to now pay your way instead of having Vermont Yankee paying it for you. Welcome to the real world.


The novel: A few words about Super Sad True Love Story. I'm reading it, but I probably won't finish it.  I don't like to spend quite that much mental time in a miserable future.  Great title, though.

Town Meetings: Town meetings are a New England staple, and if you live in a part of the country where there are no town meetings, they look pretty good.  From my cynical perspective as someone who moved to New England, Town Meetings tend to put all town decisions into the hands of those who have the leisure to show up for these often-lengthy events.

Many towns (such as mine) are amending the meeting times to get more participation, or adding an Australian Ballot (pre-printed ballot) on a regular voting day for final approval of the budget.

Town meetings have great discussions, however, and I think New England has the best meeting moderators in the world. Our town moderators have skill, tact, and deep understanding of Robert's Rules of Order.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Earthquake Anniversary: Updated and Unplugged

The non-fatal-tragedy

School buses
 They were used for evacuation
Older people fell off the seats and died
Today is is the third anniversary of the earthquake and tsunami that devastated large portions of eastern Japan on March 11, 2011.  Approximately 20,000 people died in the tsunami and earthquake, but the focus of the media has always been on the Fukushima "disaster" or "tragedy."

Three nuclear power plants suffered meltdowns.  Nobody died of direct radiation, and it is unlikely that there will be any detectable rise in cancer deaths. In terms of deaths, the immediate deaths came from mishandled evacuations.   See my post from last year: Fukushima: the Second Anniversary.


In Japan, some people are being allowed to move back to areas that had been evacuated for fear of radiation. Fuel rods are being successfully removed from Fuel Pool #4.  The story in Japan is slow, but progress is being made.

Instead of trying to update the situation myself, I will share some links:


Camera operator
From Wikipedia
Anti-nuclear activists are using today to "Unplug Nuclear Power."  They can't actually unplug nuclear power, so they are unplugging themselves by turning off their electricity for a day. Supposedly, this will "show that nuclear power is unnecessary." Activists have defined four levels of "unplugging" yourself from electricity.  In the first level, you "turn off extra lights and cut back on video games."   

My friends, these are real quotes.  I could not begin to make this stuff up!  Shall we have a "play a video game for nuclear" day, maybe?

I have great hopes that that the nuclear opponents will unplug themselves from those horrible electricity hogs: broadcast media.  If they see a reporter with a video camera at one of their rallies today, they should make her leave the premises. Otherwise, she will begin sending video to some broadcast media establishment, and that group will use a lot of electricity to broadcast the video clips.  This is totally against the spirit of "unplug nuclear power."  I hope the nuclear opponents won't let this happen.

Sunday, March 9, 2014

The Fuel Pools: Opponents Say the Darndest Things!

Attorney General Sorrell
My View of an Opponent Statement

Statement: We're gonna sue you if you use the wrong money to address our safety concerns!

Actual Statement: Attorney General Bill Sorrell said:

If Entergy elects to remove money from the fund, Sorrell said the state will take legal action.

"The fund" is the Vermont Yankee decommissioning fund.   Here's the longer quote with Sorrell's statement. This quote is from John Herrick's report in Vermont Digger-- Special Report: Despite Recent Agreement, State and Entergy Remain at Odds Over Funding for Dismantling Vermont Yankee

Entergy wants to tap the fund to move some of the roughly 3,000 total fuel assemblies at the Vernon plant from its cooling pool and into dry cask storage, a process known as spent fuel management.
Meanwhile, the state wants the fund reserved to tear down the plant.
Ultimately, the state and Entergy “agreed to disagree” on the matter.
Vermont Attorney General Bill Sorrell, who helped to negotiate the agreement, said if Entergy taps the fund, the company could mothball the plant for 60 years, a process referred to as SAFSTOR — the worst-case scenario for Vermont officials.
If Entergy elects to remove money from the fund, Sorrell said the state will take legal action.
“The stakes are very significant,” Sorrell said in an interview. "Vermont is going to want a place — a legal opportunity to be heard on those requests in the future. So stay tuned."
Fuel Pool in France
Fuel assemblies
from many nuclear
Courtesy AREVA
My Comment:

As you can see by the comment stream on the Herrick article, one of the great concerns of nuclear opponents is that spent fuel stored in fuel pools is very dangerous.  Look at Fukushima!  Oh...right, nothing happened to the fuel in the pools at Fukushima.  Well, anyhow...

Opponent comment streams have been steady on the subject that Entergy had better move that fuel quickly to save us all from danger.

But, as you can see, moving the fuel quickly is not the main goal of our state government.  No, if Entergy uses the decommissioning funds to move fuel quickly, the state will sue them.

Let's set aside the fact that decommissioning funds are usually used for fuel management. Let's set aside the fact that such fuel-moving costs may well be reimbursed by the federal government.

Dry Cask Storage
Courtesy NRC
Let's just look at the fact that the state government doesn't see moving fuel as a high priority, compared to keeping the money in the decommissioning fund in order to tear down buildings. The state is threatening to sue if Entergy doesn't use money from somewhere besides the decommissioning fund in order to perform certain decommissioning activities.

It would be moderately amusing to watch the state, once again, try to tell the NRC what to do about nuclear safety or use of decommissioning funds. These recent threats of lawsuits show that the state has not learned any lessons about pre-emption.

Furthermore,  it seems to me that punishing Entergy for running a power plant in this state is very important to Governor Shumlin. It seems more important to him to punish Entergy than to have Entergy take an action (move fuel to dry casks) which many of Shumlin's supporters believe would increase their safety.

So AG Sorrell is going sue if Entergy gets NRC permission to use the decomm fund to move fuel, and then moves it?  On what exact grounds is he going to sue?  Is he going to argue it right up to the Supreme Court?

Wow.  Opponents say the darndest things.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Living Well after Vermont Yankee

ANS Nuclear Cafe on Living Well After Vermont Yankee

This morning I have a post about people who work at Vermont Yankee at ANS Nuclear Cafe.

 What are the next step for them?  I discuss older workers, younger workers, nuclear-specific workers and people with generalized skills.  The post is optimistic (without being saccharine).  I specifically mention the everyday pain nuclear opponents inflicted on Vermont Yankee workers.  The situation of Vermont Yankee workers is not covered in any of the mass media.

I hope you will read my post and comment on it.

Say it with music

Two songs that express my feelings.

Farewell to the Monty describes the pain of a coal mine closing. My father-in-law was a coal miner. (He had left the mines and gotten other jobs before I met him.)  Farewell to the Monty is from an album of industrial folk music The Iron Muse.

The second song is very close to my heart.  LeChaim, from Fiddler on the Roof.  

Life has a way of confusing us, blessing and bruising us: Drink LeChaim, to Life! 


Enjoy the music.  I hope you read the post, Moving Forward and Living Well, at ANS Nuclear Cafe.  I hope you comment on it.

Monday, March 3, 2014

Decommissioning, Governor Shumlin, and Dry Cask Storage

Did I Write "Patronizing Bunk"?

I wrote an op-ed about the state's agreement with Entergy about decommissioning. I published it on this blog, and it was also published on Vermont Digger. On Vermont Digger, the title was Entergy Settlement Before the PSB is Good for the State. It had a lively comment stream on Vermont Digger.

Governor Peter Shumlin
In this op-ed I wrote:

However, in the course of the negotiations, I suspect the state learned some facts about  decommissioning.

Two anti-nuclear commentators called my statement: "patronizing bunk." They claimed that the state was well-versed in decommissioning from the start.  The state didn't have to learn anything.

Well, I begged to differ.

Here is part of the answer I posted, with slight edits.

About Patronizing

I was not simply being patronizing. When I wrote: “the state learned something about decommissioning,” you thought I was referring to the DPS (Department of Public Service). Actually, I was referring to Governor Shumlin. I was not clear, which was my fault. But then again, I tend to use locutions like “the state” to avoid finger-pointing at individuals.

Perhaps, instead of being vaguely snarky, I should be more direct, even if it turns out a bit more pointed at one man. Frankly, this would have been uncomfortable for me to write originally, but I am writing it to show what I was thinking about.

Below, I have written something more accurate, more pointed, and with references. Perhaps I should have written the material below, instead.

About Governor Shumlin

What I should have written:

And, it looks like over the years, Governor Shumlin himself is learning something about decommissioning. Here’s one of his press conferences from 2011:

The title includes SHUMLIN SAYS SAFSTOR WASN’T PART OF DEAL WITH ENTERGY. The article includes Governor Shumlin arguing with reporters who quote the MOU at him. It’s kind of funny, if it weren’t sad.

From the same press conference, but this time a direct quote from Shumlin:

“The jobs gap doesn’t really happen for about 16 years,” he said. “Five to six years for the plant to cool down, gotta keep all the systems running, that requires a number of employees, several hundred. And ten years of decommissioning. So the jobs cliff, despite what they tell you in those 30 second advertisements, is not as significant as long as they keep their promise on decommissioning the plant whenever it shuts down.”

The Governor is Learning

Recently, the Governor has had to eat his words and acknowledge SAFSTOR is allowed. He has had to acknowledge that the plant will not keep running for five or six years with several hundred employees. It is nobody’s fault but his own that he said these absurd things at a press conference. Nobody forced him to make such a fool of himself.

You gotta give the man credit, though, Shumlin is learning. Maybe the learning didn’t happen at the negotiations, maybe it did. Maybe it happened before. I should not have said “when” it happened, because I don’t know. But he’s gone from myth-based “hundreds of people for five-six years” to “everything will be in dry casks within seven years.” He has more of a grasp of reality now. I don’t know and should not have said exactly when he learned these things. But he is learning.

I want to say something though about his advisers. Where were they? Surely someone could have told him the facts of life about the M O U and what happens during decommissioning. Apparently, nobody did. People just let him go out there and say a bunch of things that simply are not true. He is learning, for sure. Are his advisers learning?"

Updated: The Dry Casks.  Vermont Digger Special Report on Decommissioning

I wrote a draft of this a few days ago, but I didn't post it because I was busy with our daughter's book launch.

Yesterday, Vermont Digger published a special report on remaining areas of disagreement between Vermont Yankee and the state agencies in Vermont.  John Herrick wrote Despite Recent Agreement, State and Entergy Remain at Odds Over Funding for Dismantling Vermont Yankee. 

According to this article, the state is concerned that Entergy may use decommissioning funds to move used fuel from the fuel pool to dry casks.  Attorney General Sorrell says that If Entergy elects to remove money from the fund, Sorrell said the state will take legal action.  Mr. Sorrell apparently thinks that moving fuel  to dry casks is not part of decommissioning: the state wants the decommissioning fund reserved for "tearing down the plant."

Umm...last I looked, only the NRC could say what a decommissioning fund can or cannot be used for.

Sigh. I thought the state had learned that the federal government, not the state, is responsible for regulating decommissioning and nuclear safety.  Oh well.  

Maybe they are not learning as fast as I thought they were learning.