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Florida regulators approve rate cut requests by two utilities

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(The Center Square) — Florida utility regulators approved requests this week to cut customer rates for two of Florida’s biggest electricity providers.

The Public Service Commission held its monthly meeting Tuesday and approved Tampa Electric and Duke Energy Florida’s requests to lower electricity rates, citing lower-than-expected fuel costs. Duke Energy customers using 1,000 kilowatt hours per month, can expect a $5.90 reduction in their monthly bills.

Under state law, utilities can charge customers for increased fuel charges, but when prices go down, they’re also required to lower rates.

These rates will take effect in June and are in addition to an existing 6% reduction in monthly costs that adds up to $11.29 in monthly savings from January. Duke Energy Florida supplies electricity to over 2 million residential, commercial and industrial customers in Florida, spread over a 13,000-square-mile service area.

On the company’s website, Duke Energy Florida state president Melissa Seixas said in a statement that the approvals are great for Duke Energy Florida customers.

“Today’s approvals are great news for Florida customers, especially as we get closer to our warmest months,” Seixas said. “Duke Energy continues to look for ways to pass on savings to our customers while providing the reliable, increasingly clean power our customers and communities expect.”

Tampa Electric customers using 1,000 kWh per month will have an almost $10 reduction in monthly bills, going from an average of $143.48 to $136.44 per month. The company provides services to over 840,000 customers throughout west-central Florida

Tampa Electric’s commercial customers will also have a reduction of between 4% and 11%. This is the second time rates have been lowered this year after Tampa Electric petitioned the PSC to decrease residential bills by almost $18 monthly. This cut could lead to potential savings of up to $175 for the remainder of 2024.

President and chief executive officer of Tampa Electric Archie Collins, said in a statement on the company’s website that they are pleased to be passing on savings.

“Tampa Electric is pleased to be in a position to reduce electricity bills again this year,” Collins said. “We are happy to provide customers with some welcome relief as the summer’s heat begins.”