New rates help utility keep pace with Florida’s growth and evolving customer needs and expectations
The Florida Public Service Commission (PSC) today unanimously approved TECO Peoples Gas’ proposed base-rate settlement that takes effect in January.
As result of the settlement, typical residential customers with annual consumption between 100 and 249 therms and billed at the RS-2 rate will see an increase of about $2.48 to their total monthly bills. For typical business customers with annual consumption between 2,000 and 9,999 therms and billed at the GS-1 rate, the increase will be about $24.12 to their total monthly bills.
“This settlement helps to strengthen our commitment to fuel Florida’s future with clean, safe and resilient natural gas,” said T.J. Szelistowski, president of Peoples Gas. “This is a fair resolution for our more than 400,000 customers across the state, and we could not have achieved it without the dedicated effort of all the groups working together to reach this constructive compromise.”
The settlement was reached between Peoples Gas, the Office of Public Counsel and the Florida Industrial Power Users Group, and ends the formal rate request process that the utility began earlier this year. After deferring its original filing for 60 days due to the pandemic, Peoples Gas filed a petition with the PSC in June for an increase in base rates to be effective in 2021. In October, the utility and the intervening parties agreed to file a joint motion requesting the PSC approve a settlement.
This is the utility’s first base rate increase in 12 years, and is associated with the cost to deliver natural gas from its source to serve customers, including the construction, operations and maintenance of the Peoples Gas system. This is not an increase to the price of natural gas, which has continued to be stable.
The company offers programs to support customers as well as flexible payment arrangements. It also provides opportunities for customers to qualify for cash-back rebates through conservation programs at peoplesgas.com/rebates and peoplesgas.com/bizrebates. To help customers manage energy usage and spend, Peoples Gas launched an online energy audit at peoplesgas.com/onlineaudit this spring. A variety of appliance calculators also are available online to help customers pinpoint opportunities for savings.
Peoples Gas System, Florida’s largest natural gas distribution utility, serves about 400,000 customers across the state. Peoples Gas is a subsidiary of Emera Inc., a geographically diverse energy and services company headquartered in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada.