FPL can’t raise base rates as much as requested

TALLAHASSEE — Florida Power and Light will not be allowed to hike its customers’ base rates as much as it wanted. The Florida Public Service Commission denied more than $400 million worth of the electric utility’s proposed rate changes over the next two years.

Whether or not Florida Power and Light will be allowed to raise its rates by the remaining nearly $1 billion request remains to be seen.

Public Service Commission members raised issues with FPL’s requested modifications of its charges for storm funds, utility profit margins, and collecting funds from customers for future power plants sooner than planned.

If FPL’s request had been honored as proposed, customers could have expected to see an increase of about $8.85 in their monthly bills in 2010 and another increase of about $2.72 next year – based on 1,000-kilowatt-hour electric usage.

The state’s largest electricity provider has told regulators that the rate hikes are needed so it can improve the electrical system.

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