Associated Press

ATLANTA (AP) ó A major utility appears to be better controlling its spending while building a first-of-its-kind nuclear plant in the United States.

Southern Co. reported Friday that it will need to spend $646 million more than initially expected to complete two nuclear reactors in eastern Georgia. Thatís less spending than anticipated in an estimate released last year.

Southern Co. subsidiary Georgia Power owns a 46 percent stake in the project. The total bill for all its owners is expected to exceed $14 billion.

The construction project in Georgia and an identical one in South Carolina test whether the nuclear industry can build new reactors without massively exceeding budgets.

Georgia Power raised its spending forecasts last year as the schedule lagged and it had to spend more on project oversight.