Local & State
SCE&G wants rate hike on gas, but you’ll still pay less
South Carolina Electric & Gas Co. is asking for a rate hike of $8.8 million on its 319,000 customers who use natural gas. But lower fuel costs overall mean the typical homeowner will pay an average of $11 less than a year ago even with the increase, officials with the Cayce-based utility said Monday. If granted, the rate hike would take effect in November. SCE&G’s request will be reviewed by the Public Service Commission.
New jobs for Ladson
A company that makes turbochargers for diesel engines is expanding its operations in Charleston County. Cummins Turbo Technologies said Monday it is investing $19.5 million and expects to create 76 new jobs at its Ladson facility. The Columbus, Ind.-based company says it is building a 125,000-square-foot warehouse and adding another 10,000 square feet of office space to an existing building. Cummins Turbo Technologies opened its first Charleston-area manufacturing plant in 1989 and operated under the name Holset Engineering until 2006. Officials expect the current expansion will be done by the end of this year.
Runway work begins
JOINT BASE CHARLESTON Reconstruction of the more than 60-year-old runway shared by the Charleston International Airport and the 437th Airlift Wing at Joint Base Charleston is starting this week. Air Force officials say construction on the 9,000-foot runway begins Monday and is expected to last nine to 12 months. The officials say that because the runway was built in the 1940s, it has neared the end of its lifespan and will require a total reconstruction. During the work, air traffic will use the air base’s secondary runway.
Ports Authority has ambitious plans
CHARLESTON The South Carolina Ports Authority plans to spend almost $147 million on capital projects in the new fiscal year that begins July 1. The board approved the new budget during its meeting Monday in Charleston. The authority says it’s the most aggressive investment plan in the agency’s 70-year history. Much of the money will go toward the ongoing building of a new container terminal at the old Charleston Naval Base in North Charleston. Money will also be spent on other infrastructure needs and on upgrading information systems. The new budget includes nine news jobs in operations and maintenance. The budget projects an 8 percent increase in container volume during the year. Container volume was up 10 percent during May.
Nation & World
Auto probe widens
The government has added 600,000 Toyota Camrys to an investigation of fires in power window switches. The probe now includes more than 1.4 million cars and SUVS. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says on its website that the probe now covers certain Camrys from the 2008 and 2009 model years. The investigation began in February with 2007 Camrys and RAV4 SUVs. Also affected are some 2007 to 2009 Yaris subcompacts and all 2008 Highlander Hybrid SUVs. The problem has caused 161 fires and nine injuries.
Tim Flach and The Associated Press contributed.