FPL seeking yet another rate hike

MARK SCHUMANN

In addition to the $6.93 per 1000 kilowatt rate increase recently approved by the Florida Public Service Commission for Florida Power and Light, the utility giant is now asking the PSC for permission to rase rates another $318.5 million, or $3.36 per month on the average residential customer. Together, the increases would bring FPL’s rate for 1000 kWh to $99.56.

In comparison, Vero Electric’s rate is $116.08 per 1000 kWh, for a difference of 14.2 percent. Vero Electric’s rate includes a 6 percent payment in lieu of tax to the City’s general fund. If the residents of Vero Beach were served by FPL, the City would instead assess a 6 percent franchise fee, brining FPL’s rate to $105.53, for a difference of 9 percent.

Proponents of the proposed sale of Vero Electric to FPL have long argued the move would save city residents 30 percent or more on their power bills. In truth, if the sale of the utility system to FPL ultimately requires a substantial and long-term surcharge on the current customers of Vero Electric, there may be no measurable savings to the city’s utility customers.

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