Tdworld 18511 Hurricane Michael

Duke Energy Florida Seeks to Avoid Rate Increase from Hurricane Michael Costs

May 8, 2019
Duke Energy Florida seeks PSC approval to apply federal tax reform savings to pay storm costs estimated at US$221 million.

Duke Energy Florida (DEF) recently filed a plan with the Florida Public Service Commission to avoid a rate increase for power restoration costs associated with the company's response to Hurricane Michael.

If the Florida Public Service Commission approves DEF's proposal, the company will apply federal tax reform savings to pay for storm costs instead of increasing customer rates to cover those costs.

The storm cost recovery associated with Hurricane Michael is estimated at US$221 million.

This approach could save residential customers US$6.95 per 1000 kWh of electricity on a typical monthly bill.

"The Florida Panhandle is still recovering from the damage to homes, businesses, infrastructure and tourism as a result of Hurricane Michael," said Catherine Stempien, DEF state president. "We appreciate the Office of Public Counsel, Southern Alliance for Clean Energy and other consumer advocates who helped find a creative solution to avoid the cost impact of the significant restoration and rebuild work that was unprecedented on our system."

The Florida Public Service Commission will review the Hurricane Michael costs and determine the final amount to be recovered in a subsequent proceeding later this year.

Hurricane Michael was the most powerful Florida Panhandle storm in recorded history and the fourth-most powerful hurricane to strike the United States.

More than 5500 line and field workers restored power to approximately 72,000 customers. Additionally, Michael was the first hurricane to require the complete rebuild of three distribution feeders and 34 miles of transmission lines served by DEF.

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