Morning Briefing - May 20, 2019
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May 20, 2019

NRC Sets $782.5M Fee Take for FY19

By ExchangeMonitor

The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission on Friday announced it would collect $782.5 million in licensee fees for the current federal fiscal 2019 budget year, a slight bump up from the amount proposed earlier in the year.

The final fee rule will take effect on July 16, according to a notice in the Federal Register.

By law, 90% of the NRC’s annual funding must come through licensee fees. The remaining 10% is provided by congressional appropriation. The nuclear industry regulator is funded at $911 million for the fiscal year that ends Sept. 30.

The proposed fee rule, issued in January, had set the anticipated fee level at $781.9 million.

Of the $782.5 million total, roughly $530.5 million is expected to be claimed under annual fees on licensees, with the rest recovered through service fees, according to an NRC press release.

“Compared to FY 2018, the FY 2019 annual fees will increase for operating reactors, research and test reactors, and some materials users,” the release says. “Annual fees will decrease for spent fuel storage/reactor decommissioning, fuel facilities, select materials users, the Department of Energy transportation activities, and the DOE Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act Program.”

The hourly rate of NRC work for licensees and applicants will rise from $275 in fiscal 2018 to $278 in the current budget year.

Nearly 3,000 licensees are expected to pay annual fees this year, covering 98 operational commercial power reactors, four test reactors, 122 spent fuel storage pad and decommissioning reactor sites, several fuel cycle plants, one uranium recovery facility, and roughly 2,600 nuclear materials operations.