FPL bills could drop in May in Northeast Florida

Published on March 21, 2024 at 11:11 am

Staff are recommending the state Public Service Commission approve a proposal that would reduce bills for customers of Florida Power & Light Co. because of lower-than-expected fuel costs.

FPL last week filed the proposal, which would save customers about $662 million. If the proposal is approved, the savings would start showing up in customers’ bills in May and continue through December.

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The commission is scheduled to take up the issue April 2.

FPL serves portions of Baker, Clay, Nassau, Putnam and St. Johns counties in Northeast Florida. Bills would fall by about $8 per month for the average customer in Northeast Florida, on top of an approximate $7 reduction that is already planned in April.

The proposal stems from lower-than-expected costs for natural gas, which is used heavily to fuel power plants in Florida. The commission each fall approves projected fuel costs for the following year, but utilities can seek what is known as a “mid-course correction” if fuel costs vary significantly from the projections.

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“FPL’s 2024 fuel-related revenue requirement has decreased substantially since the filing of its last cost projection in September 2023,” Thursday’s commission staff recommendation said.

Utilities use a benchmark of customers who consume 1,000 kilowatt hours of electricity a month. FPL has two sets of rates because of a merger with the former Gulf Power.

Customers in the former Gulf Power territory in Northwest Florida who use 1,000 kilowatt hours a month currently pay $149.89. That will be reduced to $143.08 in April because certain storm-related costs will end, according to FPL. If the fuel-related proposal is approved, the Northwest Florida bills will go to $135.38 in May.

FPL customers in other parts of the state pay $135.69 for 1,000 kilowatt hours of electricity. That will go to $128.88 in April and would decrease to $121.19 in May under the proposal.

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