By Sylvia Vega
Beginning in January, Tampa Electric residential customers could see monthly bills below $100 – the lowest in 13 years.
The company filed projected costs for fuel and other clauses with the Florida Public Service Commission (PSC). If the PSC approves the requests as filed, the average residential customer’s 2019 monthly energy bill would drop by about eight percent, or more than $8, to $99.55 for 1,000 kilowatt-hours (kWh) of usage. Commercial and industrial customers would also see bills drop by about eight percent, depending on usage.
“Tampa Electric will have some of the lowest rates in Florida, as we continue to provide outstanding value to our customers,” said Nancy Tower, president and chief executive officer of Tampa Electric. “We are proud that bills in 2019 will drop to about the same level as they were in 2005.”
The PSC is expected to vote on the proposed decrease after a hearing scheduled to begin Nov. 5. The proposed decrease is the result of lower costs of fuel and environmental compliance costs, among other factors, and also includes the addition of seven utility-scale solar projects that are coming online in the next several months. This reduction is on top of a previous decrease approved by the PSC on August 20, which in January will reduce bills by $6.50 as a result of tax reform.
If approved as filed, Tampa Electric residential customers’ bills would continue to be among the lowest in Florida and would drop to about 23 percent below the national average – according to April 2018 data from the Energy Information Administration the national average of residential electric bills is $128.90 per month.
Tampa Electric’s fuel mix includes natural gas, coal and solar. The cost of fuel is currently about one-fourth of a residential customer’s bill. Fuel costs are passed through from fuel suppliers to our customers with no markup or profit to Tampa Electric. Tampa Electric maximizes the use of existing low-cost, well-performing plants and power purchased from other companies to mitigate costs and pass the savings to customers.
Tampa Electric, one of Florida’s largest investor-owned electric utilities, serves about 750,000 customers in West Central Florida. Tampa Electric is a subsidiary of Emera Inc., a geographically diverse energy and services company headquartered in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada. Visit www.tampaelectric.com/.