Rising Costs and Sluggish Growth Cause Tampa Electric to Seek Rate Increase
If approved, residential bills would remain below national average and among
lowest in state
TAMPA, Fla. -- February 4, 2013
Due to increased costs and sluggish growth, Tampa Electric Co. today notified
the Florida Public Service Commission (PSC) that it intends to file a request
to raise residential rates by about 10 percent in January 2014.
Tampa Electric is seeking about $135 million, or an increase of about $11 a
month – or 35 cents a day – for the average residential customer who uses
1,000 kilowatt-hours a month.
If approved as filed, the average residential bill would rise about 10 percent
to about $113 a month – customers would still be paying lower bills than six
years ago. That average bill would remain 5 percent below the national
average, which was $118.70 in September 2012, according to the Energy
Information Administration. In the past four years, Tampa Electric’s
residential customer bills have dropped by more than $12.
“There is never a good time to raise rates, and we empathize with our
customers who are also feeling the effects of a difficult economy. The pace of
the economic recovery has not been what anyone predicted,” said Gordon
Gillette, president of Tampa Electric. “We have worked diligently to keep
costs low, but costs continue to outpace growth.
“It is important to remember that while the cost of nearly everything has gone
up in recent years, the relative cost of electricity has gone down,” Gillette
said. “We are proud to offer our customers a great value – and rates that will
remain among the lowest of Florida’s utilities.”
Tampa Electric last requested a rate increase in 2008. Since then, we have
improved reliability: For the past five years, Tampa Electric’s customers have
had the fewest – and among the shortest – interruptions among Florida’s
investor-owned utilities. In that time, we also have invested in projects such
as a reclaimed water pipeline to serve the Polk Power Station; Big Bend
solid-fuel handling equipment; and transmission expansion and improvements.
Tampa Electric will file its proposed rate increase with the PSC in April. The
PSC is expected to hold hearings and to vote on the issue by the end of the
year. The new rates would take effect in 2014.
Tampa Electric Company is the principal subsidiary of TECO Energy Inc. (NYSE:
TE), an energy-related holding company with regulated utility operations in
Florida, including both Tampa Electric and Peoples Gas System. Tampa Electric
serves nearly 676,000 customers in West Central Florida. TECO Energy’s other
major subsidiary, TECO Coal, owns and operates coal production facilities in
Kentucky and Virginia.
Tampa Electric Co.
Cherie Jacobs, 813-228-4945
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