The owners of a Binghamton electricity generating facility thought they had a buyer for the plant a few months ago but the sale wasn't completed.

California-based Wellhead Electric Company had spent millions of dollars on the Charles Street site over the past three years but was never able to make money on the operation over the long run.

Joe Wagda, a company executive, said the Binghamton plant can't be officially retired until state regulators approve the move. That action could come in the next few weeks.

Wagda said the facility can make money during severe weather, when it's very cold or very warm and energy demand rises significantly. He said a feasibility study conducted for Wellhead suggested the Binghamton plant could be operated at a profit.

Wagda said at one point, six or seven people worked at the facility. Now, only three people remain on the payroll as the company keeps the plant ready if it's needed.

The generating plant went into operation in 1992 to provide power to the nearby Anitec manufacturing complex.

Wagda is disappointed that the Binghamton bet didn't pay off. He said "Binghamton was one of my children" and now that it's about to be retired "it makes me sad."

The Binghamton power plant generated a profit during periods of very cold weather. (Photo: Bob Joseph/WNBF News)

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