TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — The Tampa Electric Company, Duke Energy Florida, and Florida Power & Light have requested the Florida Public Service Commission approve rate hikes for 2023 due to “volatile” fluctuations of natural gas prices.
The FPSC will review the requests and decide whether or not to approve them before the end of 2022, according to documents from the commission.
Depending on the company, rates will increase between 7.9% and 15.15%, with FP&L’s rate increase the lowest proposed hike, according to documents filed with the FPSC, and Duke Energy Florida the highest. TECO’s proposed rate hike would amount to a 10.7% increase.
For monthly bills averaging a 1,000 kilowatt per hour usage, here’s how prices could change, according to the petitions filed by the three companies.
|Company||2022 Average Cost||Proposed 2023 Average Cost||Dollar Difference||% Difference|
|Duke Energy Florida||$148.23||$170.68||$22.45||15.15%|
|Florida Power & Light||$120.67||$130.23||$9.56||7.9%|
|Tampa Electric Company||$132.66||$146.86||$14.20||10.7%|
Should the requests be approved, all three companies’ customers will see higher bills throughout 2023, beginning with their January bills. On Sept. 2, all three companies filed their petitions to charge their customers more for power.
In statements to customers and the media released on Sept. 2, after the petitions were filed, TECO and Duke explained the situation they say they’re in due to current circumstances.
“We recognize and acknowledge the unique economic challenges our customers and communities are facing,” Archie Collins, president and CEO of Tampa Electric, said. “Our focus on creating value is unwavering, and we are committed to working with you to overcome the challenges of rising global energy prices – just as we have for 125 years.”
TECO said their customers would see an 8% to 12% increase in monthly costs, but that “the bill would remain below the national average and among the lowest in Florida,” depending on power use.
“We understand our customers continue facing increased financial demands in all parts of their lives,” Melissa Seixas, Duke Energy Florida state president, said. “We’re connecting customers to available assistance and providing energy-saving tools and programs to help manage their bills and lessen the impact. Please reach out to us. We’re here to help.”
In their own press statement, Duke said they’re expecting a 13% average increase for their Florida customers. Duke said it will not profit from the cost increases, and takes steps to “proactively” keep customers from experiencing price “volatility.”
WFLA.com has reached out to Florida Power & Light and are awaiting a response. No press release is publicly available. However, speaking with WESH, the Orlando NBC affiliate, an FPL spokesperson provided a brief statement on the proposed increases, saying they were “mindful that our customers are experiencing record inflation,” and that the company was working “hard every day to drive costs out of our business and keep FPL bills among the lowest in Florida and well below the national average.”