Ge's Secret Wppss Settlement

RICHLAND - General Electric Co. has paid $134.9 million to the operator of the state's only nuclear power plant in a secret settlement of a lawsuit alleging design errors. The settlement was sealed by a judge in 1992 and only recently became public, the Tri-City Herald reported yesterday.

George Tupper, spokesman for the Washington Public Power Supply System, said the settlement was used to increase generating capacity, resulting in cheaper electricity for ratepayers.

The settlement required GE to pay the costs of boosting the generation capacity of WPPSS' No. 2 reactor on the Hanford reservation by 5 percent.

GE wanted the settlement sealed because it didn't want other utilities to discover how much it was giving WPPSS, a supply-system