Increased Duke Fuel Costs Get Go-Ahead

Posted By: Dave Heller Industry , Legislative/Regulatory ,

Tallahassee, Fla. — Duke Energy Florida customers will start seeing increased monthly bills because of higher-than-expected fuel costs for power plants.

The state Public Service Commission on Tuesday approved a Duke request to collect an additional $314 million from customers, with the change taking effect in March. Duke and other utilities have grappled for months with higher-than-expected natural gas prices.

Each year, the Public Service Commission sets the amounts that utilities can collect for fuel in the following year. But if costs are higher than expected, utilities can seek what are known as “mid-course corrections” that allow them to increase the amounts that customers pay.

Under the request approved Tuesday, residential customers who use 1,000 kilowatt hours of electricity would see their monthly bills go from the current $140.96 to $148.90.

The utility industry uses 1,000 kilowatt-hour residential bills as a benchmark, though electricity usage varies widely. The commission has also approved a mid-course correction sought by Florida Power & Light because of fuel costs and is considering a proposed increase by Tampa Electric Co.

Article reposted with permission from the News Service of Florida.