WUFT News

New Florida House bill could reduce utility rates, repeal cost recovery programs

By and on March 27th, 2013

The Florida House Energy and Utilities Subcommittee is proposing a bill that could reduce utility bills for many Florida residents.

The subcommittee held a hearing Wednesday with representatives from Florida Power and Light and Progress Energy to discuss cost recovery programs.

Cost recovery allows power companies to charge their customers in advance for new nuclear power plants. A problem with this plan is customers can be charged and not reimbursed even if power companies don’t end up building the plants.

Former U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Committee member Peter Bradford spoke out against cost recovery. He said the clause puts customers at risk of paying for nuclear plants that may never be developed.

Bradford also pointed out that power companies do not analyze whether some nuclear plants are in the best interests of the customers.

“They haven’t been required to conduct a rigorous, ongoing analysis using best cost estimates of alternatives, as to whether these plants remain in the best interest of the customers,” Bradford said.

Steven Scroggs, senior director of Florida Power and Light, spoke about the benefits of cost recovery for nuclear plants. He said the cost recovery clause allows power companies to increase their nuclear generation, which saves costumers money in the long run. He said cost recovery has been successful for Florida Power and Light and its customers.

“Through the nuclear cost recovery law, we were able to go forward with 500 new megawatts of base-load nuclear generation, the first nuclear generation in 30 years,” Scroggs said. “We were able to bring that on and provide our customers with savings of about 10 million dollars a month, over a 100 million dollars a year.”

Alex Glenn, Florida president of Progress Energy — which will become Duke Energy in late April — is also in favor of nuclear cost recovery. He said nuclear power is becoming a great alternative energy source as natural gas prices increase.

“We’re taking steps to maintain nuclear for the long term in the state, which we believe is the right choice,” Glenn said.

Members of the public voiced their opinions on cost recovery during the hearing. Charles Milsted, AARP Florida associate state director, said cost recovery is unfair to consumers.

“We believe with advance cost recovery that the consumer covers both the risk and the cost,” he said. “If the plant is built, the consumer will pay for it. If the plant is not built, the consumer will pay for it, and there is not likely to be a refund because many of them will not still be around.”

Currently, Progress Energy and Florida Power and Light customers may pay about two dollars per electric bill to cover nuclear plant construction. The proposed bill would repeal the cost recovery clause that allows this.


This entry was posted in Florida and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.
 

More Stories in Florida

Gov. Scott Announced Funding For Final Phase Of Restoration Projects

Florida Gov. Rick Scott announced funding for the third and largest phase of early restoration projects to combat the Deepwater Horizon (BP) Oil Spill of 2010 on Oct. 7. Although $100 million was allocated to Florida by the Deepwater Horizon [...]


Florida bay scallops typically reach a shell height of three inches and have a life expectancy of one year. They have tiny blue eyes that help detect movement, and they can swim backward by opening and closing the two shells.

Scallop Researchers to Start Underwater Surveying

Now that the harvesting season is over, researchers are starting underwater studies to determine the state of scallop populations at 10 sites along the west coast of Florida.


At the initial hiring event in Orlando, Fla., 55 veterans and military personnel were in attendance. About 150 veterans have applied to work with the Department of Corrections since the initiative was launched on Jun. 26.

DOC Partners with National Guard, Hires Military Personnel

The Florida Department of Corrections partnered with the Florida National Guard to hire veterans and military personnel who are unemployed. These specialty hiring events last all day and are open to all branches in the Florida National Guard and Reserves.


photo

‘Pot Predicament’ Forum Fuels Amendment 2 Debate

A panel of four met to discuss Amendment 2 and medical marijuana at a Tuesday night forum on the University of Florida Campus. Alachua County Sheriff Sadie Darnell and former Florida House Speaker John Mills dominated the forum as they debated each other about legislation language and the need for medical marijuana.


The Ocala City Council repealed the so-called "saggy pants" ordinance at Ocala City Hall on Tuesday evening. The ordinance banned saggy pants on city property.

Ocala City Council Repeals ‘Saggy Pants’ Ordinance

The Ocala City Council voted to repeal an ordinance banning saggy pants on city property. The controversial ordinance met with criticism from the NAACP.


Thank you for your support

WUFT depends on the support of our community — people like you — to help us continue to provide quality programming to North Central Florida.
Become a Sustainer
I want to support FM 89.1/NPR
I want to support Florida's 5/PBS
Donate a Vehicle
Day Sponsorship Payments
Underwriting Payments