(The Center Square) — Georgia Power and the Public Service Commission have reached a deal to allow the power company to increase its rates.
Georgia Power had asked to increase customer rates by roughly $2.9 billion — nearly 12% — over the next three years. Under a deal signed with PSC staff, the increase would amount to nearly $1.8 billion over three years.
The PSC’s five elected commissioners must still approve the accord agreed to by Georgia Power, the PSC’s Public Interest Advocacy Staff and a group of intervenors.
“As part of this agreement, the stipulating parties offer modifications to Georgia Power’s original request that are intended to result in just and reasonable rate and balance the interests of the various parties in this case,” Preston Thomas, a PSC staff attorney, wrote in a letter filed with the commission. “In comparison to Georgia Power’s original rate request, this stipulated agreement lowers rate impacts to Georgia Power’s customers and with some key changes, recommends approval of Georgia Power’s rate request as filed.”
In his letter, Thomas said the revised deal lowers the monthly bill increase during the first year from $14.90 to about $3.60.
“This is 75% lower than Georgia Power’s original request,” Thomas wrote. “The first-year impact on the typical residential monthly bill is now a 2.6% rate impact followed by approximately 4.5% each of the next two years.”
The deal also lowered Georgia Power’s operations and maintenance (O&M) spending by an additional $180 million over three years and lowered its Grid Investment Plan (GIP) request by 40% for the same period.
By T.A. DeFeo | The Center Square contributor