FPL parent loses bid for federal tax refund

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – A federal appeals court Thursday ruled against NextEra Energy, the parent company of Florida Power & Light, in a tax dispute related to fees paid for the disposal of nuclear waste.

A three-judge panel of the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a district judge’s ruling that NextEra, which operates nuclear power plants in Florida and three other states, was not entitled to what the court described as a “sizeable” tax refund.

The ruling said NextEra sought a tax refund for operating losses related to fees it paid to the federal Nuclear Waste Fund for disposal of radioactive waste.

The case, in part, involved a section of the federal tax code related to expenses in “decommissioning” nuclear power plants.

But the appeals court said NextEra failed to prove that payment of the fees to the federal fund “was for an act that qualified as nuclear decommissioning (and) and was done pursuant to law that required nuclear decommissioning.”