TAMPA (WFLA) – After significantly lowering bills during the pandemic, Tampa Electric is seeking to raise customer bills in 2021 to keep pace with the rising cost of natural gas.
TECO says they filed projected costs for fuel and other clauses with the Florida Public Service Commission (PSC), to take effect next year. The PSC is expected to vote on the adjustment after a hearing scheduled to begin Nov. 3.
If the PSC approves the requests as filed, the average residential customer’s 2021 monthly energy bill would be $105.83 for 1,000 kilowatt-hours (kWh) of use. It would be an increase of about 8 percent, or $8.14 per month, compared to current bills, which were lowered in June.
“In 2020, we passed along savings to customers by lowering bills up to 11 percent for residential customers and 14 percent to 20 percent for commercial customers,” said Nancy Tower, president and chief executive officer of Tampa Electric. “Those savings will continue, as expected, through December.
While the proposed increase is largely the result of rising natural gas prices, a portion of the impact is due to the recently approved Storm Protection Plan, which will install some power lines underground to increase our grid’s reliability during severe weather. It also includes the addition of a new utility-scale solar project that will come online in January.
LATEST ON THE CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC:
- COVID-19 death rates rising in Florida, other states
- What comes next after FDA panel’s rejection of Pfizer’s third booster shot?
- Latest CDC study: Both 2-dose COVID vaccines provide more protection than 1-dose J&J shot
- Moderna vaccine is most effective against hospitalization from COVID-19, CDC study finds
- COVID-19 is evolving, ‘getting better’ at becoming an airborne virus