Only weeks after a major Georgia Power rate increase started hitting Georgians bills, the power company is asking to collect more from ratepayers to cover the cost of coal, gas and nuclear fuel in its power plants, according to an article published in the Atlanta journal constitution.
The company’s request, if granted, would raise the average customers monthly bill anywhere between $17 to $23 dollars beginning on June 1st. Georgia Power attributed the request rate increase to sky-high global fuel prices. While the cost of natural gas has fallen recently, the company said prices nearly tripled between 2020 and 2022. Coal prices also rose during the depths of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The article continues and states that as part of its request, Georgia Power did propose raising the Income Qualified Senior Citizen Fuel Discount from $6 to $8 per month, which it offers to customers 65 years of age and older with a household income of $29,160 or less.
This follows the 1.8-billion-dollar rate increase that was approved over a three-year period two months ago that is already adding 4 dollars a month to bills. Larger and additional hikes will follow in both 2024 and 2025. According to the article even before the rate increase on January 1st Georgians monthly electricity bills were among the most expensive in the country. Which equates to about 13 dollars more than the national average according to the most recent 2021 data available. However, that report includes all bills from electric providers in Georgia not just Georgia Power.
Hearings on Georgia Power’s request are set to begin on May 2 and the commission will issue a final decision in the case on May 16.