Georgia Power, PSC staff agree on fuel costs recovery
Georgia Power and the state Public Service Commission’s (PSC) Public Interest Advocacy Staff have reached an agreement resulting in a slight reduction in the utility’s request to recover $2.1 billion in higher fuel costs from customers.
If the commission approves the agreement next month, Georgia Power would trim $7 million off the recovery request. Still, the average customer who uses 1,000 kilowatt-hours of electricity per month would see an increase of at least $17 on their monthly bills.
“Just as Georgians paid higher prices at the gas pump in 2022, Georgia Power also paid more for the natural gas and other fuels we use to generate electricity, and the company does not earn any profit from these fuel costs,” Georgia Power spokesman John Kraft said late last week.
Georgia Power executives first announced the company would be seeking to recover its fuel costs for the last two years during testimony before the PSC at hearings last fall on the utility’s 2022 rate hike request.
The commission approved a $1.8 billion rate increase for Georgia Power in December, which raised the average residential customer’s monthly bill by $3.60 effective last Jan. 1. The utility then filed for the fuel costs recovery in February.
A s part of the agreement filed last Thursday, Georgia Power agreed to file by next Monday a revised estimate of its under-recovered fuel costs through March 31. The utility also has agreed to increase its senior citizen discount from $6 to $8, bringing it to $32 per month.
The PSC will hold hearings on the proposed agreement early next month and vote on the plan May 16.
Besides the fuel costs recovery and the increase in base rates that took effect in January, Georgia Power also will be looking to recover the costs of bringing into service the two new nuclear reactors being built at Plant Vogtle. The first of the two reactors is scheduled to begin commercial operation by June.