Duke Energy

South Carolina regulators have filed a counter proposal that would limit a rate increase proposed by Duke Energy. The Office of Regulatory Staff filed testimony early this week that would nearly cut in half the increase proposed by the Charlotte-based utility.

In March, Duke proposed raising rates by 15 percent to help generate an extra $220 million each year. Duke says it would raise the rate for a homeowner who uses 1,000 kilowatts of power a month by $18 to around $118.

Duke has 540,000 South Carolina customers, mostly in the Upstate.

July 4th Also a Day of Remembrance

July 4th is a day to celebrate our freedom as Americans. U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack says it’s also a day to show our gratitude…

“We come together as family and friends and community to celebrate our nations founding and to reflect on those who have sacrificed so much and to remember that they came from small towns and farming communities. Because they learned that something worth having is worth the sacrifice.” 

Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack

Don’t Look for Cracker Barrel Restaurant’s Products in Grocery Stores Any Time Soon

A federal judge in Chicago has temporarily blocked Cracker Barrel Old Country Store from selling branded meats and other food items in grocery stores.

Cracker Barrel (CBRL) was seeking to broaden its portfolio of packaged food items — mainly hams and other meats — and start selling them through supermarkets, club stores and other retailers. But food giant Kraft Foods (KRFT) is suing to block the move, saying it would infringe on Kraft’s trademarked Cracker Barrel brand cheese and confuse consumers.

Americans Love Their Grills

Today is the Independence Day holiday, and grills will be firing up coast to coast. According to the survey by Mintel, ground beef remains the staple on the majority of American grills this summer. Even as beef prices have moved to record levels this year, the survey shows 91 percent of Americans see hamburgers as the most popular barbecue choice. Second on the list is more beef, with the survey showing 85 percent of Americans put steak on the grill. Other meats receiving high scores are chicken (also 85 percent) and hot dogs (84 percent).

Although Independence Day is one of the grill’s biggest moments in the sun, Mintel says the average consumer uses the grill at least three times per week at the height of outdoor grilling season.


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