SCRIBA, N.Y. -- Gov. Andrew Cuomo put out a statement just now on the closing of the FitzPatrick nuclear plant in Oswego County, saying the decision showed "callous disregard'' for the plant's employees.
Cuomo also said state officials will pursue "every legal and regulatory avenue'' to try to stop plant owner Energy Corp. from shutting the reactor.
"The closing of the James A. FitzPatrick Nuclear Power Plant will devastate the lives of the more than 600 employees and their families,'' Cuomo said. "Good corporate citizenship must appreciate that there are many factors that count as the 'bottom line.' The State of New York will pursue every legal and regulatory avenue in an attempt to stop Entergy's actions and its callous disregard for their skilled and loyal workforce."
Members of Cuomo's administration engaged in confidential discussions with Entergy for at least two months, apparently seeking a compromise that would keep FitzPatrick open. Many observers suspect the talks centered around Entergy's profitable Indian Point nuclear plant in Westchester County. Cuomo has fought Entergy's application for a 20-year extension of Indian Point's operating license.
Neither side has revealed what the FitzPatrick discussions entailed. Entergy officials today thanked state officials for negotiating, but said no agreement was reached that could keep the plant in operation.
"New York state officials worked as hard as we did over the past two months to reach a constructive and mutually beneficial agreement to avoid a shutdown of FitzPatrick, but our efforts were ultimately unsuccessful,'' Entergy CEO Leo Denault said during a conference call with stock analysts.
Cuomo administration officials did not immediately reply to a request for additional comment.