Published: Apr 08, 2013 6:03 PM EDT

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) - Florida lawmakers are advancing a bill that changes the state law that lets utilities charge customers for future nuclear power plants.
    
The current law has come under fire because it allows utilities to charge customers even if the plant never gets built. But past efforts to repeal the law have gone nowhere in the Legislature.
    
A Senate panel on Monday approved a bill (SB 1472) that would place limits on how much utilities could collect. It would require state regulators to sign off on the fee after utilities reach certain stages
    
Florida's largest utility companies oppose the legislation.
    
Utilities normally cannot begin billing customers for the construction costs or upgrades until generating facilities go into service. But a 2006 law makes an exception to that policy for nuclear power.

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