Florida Power and Light Company today sent notice to the Florida Public Service Commission that it will be asking for a $695 million rate increase, this one to take effect in 2013, that would cost average of $6.80 a month for the typical residential customer bill.
FPL is the largest utility in Florida with 4.5 million customers and approximately 10,000 employees. The company last sought a $1 billion rate increase two years ago, but state regulators rejected all but about $75 million of it as unjustified. At the urging of the FPL and other utility companies, the state Senate subsequently refused to confirm two of those PSC members who rejected the increase and a legislatively-controlled nominating commission refused to reappoint two others.
The newly configured PSC in October approved the company's requests for rate increases to pay for nuclear projects. The PSC has also replaced the executive director with Braulio Baez, a former PSC commissioner and lawyer for utility companies.
The company said in a statement that the additional revenues are needed "to pay for increases in the cost of doing business and to begin paying for a new, high-efficiency natural gas power plant after it enters service in June 2013."