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      Santee Cooper loans Laurens County $1.5 million

      South Carolina's state-owned utility has agreed to loan the Laurens County Development Commission $1.5 million to build a shell building.

      LAURENS, S.C. (AP) -- South Carolina's state-owned utility has agreed to loan the Laurens County Development Commission $1.5 million to build a shell building.

      Laurens County hopes to attract a new business to the 50,000 square foot building by providing power, water and sewer ready to go in the structure, which is also near a railroad line.

      Santee Cooper is providing the loan because utility CEO Lonnie Carter says the company has a responsibility to promote business opportunities in the state.

      Santee Cooper has loaned $5.6 million to several business development projects across South Carolina in the past six months. The utility provides power to 2 million people in the state.