Gulf Power Seeks Extra Charge To Recover Hurricane Sally Restoration Costs

February 23, 2021

The Florida Public Service Commission is considering a proposal that will have Gulf Power customers paying $206 million for Hurricane Sally costs. PSC staff members have recommended that the charge be approved.

In its petition Gulf Power states that before Hurricane Sally the utility’s reserve fund was fully depleted and in a deficit position primarily due to Hurricane Michael costs.

If approved, the charge would be added to Gulf Power customer bills, including both residential and commercial, beginning March 2. For residential customers, the proposed charge would be $3 on a 1,000 kwh bill.

Gulf Power customers have been paying a Hurricane Michael recover charge since July, 1, 2020. That charged amounts to $8 a month for a residential customer using 1,000 kilowatt hours a month of electricity.

Pictured: Contract crews working for Gulf Power replace a snapped off pole along North Century Boulevard at Pond Street following Hurricane Sally. NorthEscambia.com photos, click to enlarge.

Comments

39 Responses to “Gulf Power Seeks Extra Charge To Recover Hurricane Sally Restoration Costs”

  1. I like my power on on February 25th, 2021 7:31 pm

    A lot of unfounded accusations flying here. I like having my power on quickly after a storm. Nothing is free.

  2. DMW on February 25th, 2021 12:45 pm

    Use your power and voice to let the Public Service Commission know you don’t want the rates increased. This board sets all regulatory fees you see on all of your bills. Also, contact Ron DeSantis because he is the one that appoints these people. Ron DeSantis might be interested in what you have to say since he will be running for governor again in 2022.

  3. Darlene Belanger on February 25th, 2021 12:11 pm

    GULF POWER HAS HURRICANE INSURANCE JUST LIKE EVERY OTHER COMPANY IN THE COUNTRY.
    GULF POWER IS ALREADY FINANCIALLY RAPING THE PUBLIC AS IT IS !
    WE NEED A SERIOUS INVESTIGATION AND CLASS ACTION LAW SUIT.

  4. np630ss on February 24th, 2021 10:48 am

    When FPL bought Southern Company, I fore told the rate hikes were coming. I also warned quality of service would decline. Drastically. In Central Florida, FPL is referred to as Florida Plunder & Loot. They pull rate hike shenanigans if the wind changes direction. Service is unheard of. I lost a ground reference on my home. An electrician determined the cause was at the FPL pole. It was 15 DAYS before they sent anyone out and he DIDN’T fix it – just made out a request for a pole truck. It was another week before it showed up.
    This is just the beginning with FPL. It will get worse. Much worse.

  5. retired on February 24th, 2021 9:24 am

    gulf power now. next will be your insurance company

  6. Safebear on February 23rd, 2021 10:35 pm

    The FPSC members are appointed by the Governor of Florida and confirmed by the Florida Senate. Guess which lobbyist support the Governor and a lot of the Senate, especially Republicans. I’ll bet Gulf Power probably has a lot of say in who gets appointed.

  7. TERRYTRAWICK on February 23rd, 2021 10:25 pm

    WE KNOW hurricanes are going to hit florida,why not use some common sense and put power lines underground. Our powerbills are high enough.EVERYTIME we have upgrades our hurricanes we the cosumer pays the price.

  8. Seth Fontan on February 23rd, 2021 9:56 pm

    They know their days are limited… Fossil Fuels are on their way out. The Middle Eastern Countries have been raking in Trillions of dollars on oil since the 70’s knowing that the day is coming. Renewable clean energy is free, but we have been “trained” to believe that their source is the only way. The future is upon us now and we need to claim it.

  9. alex on February 23rd, 2021 7:39 pm

    So if I open a car lot. A semi runs through it and hits 15 cars. Im gonna raise the prices of other cars to recoupe? No. Being in business means you accept the risk without passing it to you clientele. Its wrong. especially when this business probably has insurance that has paid them out for all of this damage to the grid ect.

  10. PcolaWinger on February 23rd, 2021 7:09 pm

    I have to wonder why they don’t carry some sort of insurance to protect against this….

  11. FL-girl31 on February 23rd, 2021 6:40 pm

    What I don’t get, we must carry insurance to cover our losses from a hurricane. We pay a premium every month/year and the insurance company pays us if we have a loss; simply speaking. Why is it, that the power companies are not required to carry insurance for equipment loss from storms? Why is the cost of this always passed on to the power customer? Why doesn’t our insurance cover the added cost of rate increase as a loss? If every storm forces the power company to increase rates due to repairs, maybe an investigation needs to be completed on why there is always so much damage and the system wasn’t built to protect from known issues. Why pay to keep fixing something that is so vulnerable, FIX IT once, not every storm.

  12. Christina on February 23rd, 2021 6:14 pm

    Just would like to know why in just last month a d this month my power bill had doubled. My dad has loved at this address over 4 years and has never had a power bill over $280 but .. last months bill was over 500 and so far this mo the bill is over 400 . Nothing about his life has changed he libes by himself . I am not the only one dealing with a bill that has doubled. Why is there not anyone taking this seriously? Why is our elders being treated this way on a fixed income . My dad gets $820 dollars a month thays all .. his house note is $420 .. tell me how he is supposed to cover a bill like this . Why has he never in 4 years had a bill over 280 until now .

  13. Retired ECSO on February 23rd, 2021 4:22 pm

    So, the power was out . The power is a service that we pay for, if they don’t provide the service ( such as power) .why should we have to pay for what we are not getting ?

  14. Randy Lucas on February 23rd, 2021 3:49 pm

    Wow…The Folks in Texas don’t have to pay for their electric bill rates doubling or tripling during a winter storm. But,Gulf Power wants to Shanghai all of the folks on the Gulf Coast…Maybe it’s time for all of us to go solar…..I appreciate all of the workers who got us all back up and running after the Hurricanes,but Dang the folks making these decisions need to think before they jump.

  15. mnon on February 23rd, 2021 3:27 pm

    Here we go… I’m already paying way too much for my power to stay warm in the winter.

    Doesn’t natural disaster relief when a disaster is declared cover the cost of fixing the power? If not it should.

    Gulf Power better be good to us, I already researched combined solar and wind to power my home. For ~10k I’ll never need them again.

  16. DD on February 23rd, 2021 2:41 pm

    @ aaron

    Thank you for the link!

  17. Brandon on February 23rd, 2021 2:05 pm

    What they don’t collect money from the FEDS AFTER A NATURAL DISASTER??????

  18. Tim Grant on February 23rd, 2021 1:29 pm

    Everybody on the PSC staff have ties to Gulf Power and Florida Power and Light. That’s why they want to raise rates. Let’s discuss the bonuses the top executives get paid, NOT because they are helping their customers, but because they continue to finds excuses to raise the rates on those customers. Their pay is through the roof then include their bonuses and it crazy money for sticking it to the customers..

  19. MR REALITY on February 23rd, 2021 12:25 pm

    Sadly, if they have a plublic meeting about this NONE OF YOU WILL SHOW UP!!!! This is a case of the chickens coming home to roost!

  20. aaron on February 23rd, 2021 11:59 am

    here is the florida public service commission complaint form.

    https://www.floridapsc.com/ConsumerAssistance/ConsumerComplaintForm

  21. Dwight Norstum on February 23rd, 2021 11:22 am

    Evidently we’re not paying enough to the guaranteed 8% profit company. Why doesn’t Gulf Power just needs tell us how much is enough money to pay for power. I have called multiple time to get them to trim the vegetation on the utility lines and all I get is it is the municipality’s responsibility to trim them now. Due to southern company’s apparent past and current mismanagement practices they kept inventing excuses to raise rates and add assessments. They should be firing executives and cut their absorbent pay checks! What was done with the money we paid them to fix the infrastructure after Ivan? That was also supposed to put funding for the next storm. Who is on the public service commission board? It’s not anyone that I know of. The last time I looked they were all tied to the power companies and live in other parts of Florida. This is nothing but old fashioned greed.

  22. customer on February 23rd, 2021 10:19 am

    This is ridiculous we steady pay more and more and steady being over charged, let it get real cold or real hot expect for your bill to double even if you don’t change your thermostat GO FIGURE

  23. paul on February 23rd, 2021 10:16 am

    We’re all appreciative of the workers that restore power when it goes down, what we don’t need is an already overburdened public trying to deal with the high costs of everything just to live, There is nothing we can do about mother nature dealing us blow after blow every damn year. This is the gulf coast/hurricane alley.

    Why cant the PSC exhaust every other option out there before they stick it to the taxpayers. Aren’t there funds available for natural disasters that take place? At the aftermath of the hurricane was there any call for federal aid to deal with infrastructure failures.

    Bottom line is they have us all bent over a barrel, and the screwing over of the people will continue. As another commenter stated , they waste millions of dollars on unneeded advertising. They are selling one product – ELECTRICITY – EVERBODY HAS TO HAVE IT , no need to waste money on the obvious. Put those not needed advertising dollars into a disaster fund.

    Spend wasted funds on upgrading and fortifying the grids to help mitigate damages incurred.. Wasted cyber ink, because we all know they are not going to dip into the corporate profit coffers.

  24. Betty Williams on February 23rd, 2021 10:14 am

    It’s too bad that ALL the Utility Companies continue to gouge customers. Many customers are on fixed retirement income. Some through no fault of their own are house bound and without a job. Surely these companies can find other ways of conserving expenditures and profit without raising the cost to customers. The companies have operated in our community for 40 plus years, they know what weather problems might occur. Maybe consider forgoing executive raises for while.

  25. James E. Hicks on February 23rd, 2021 10:02 am

    When Gulf Power said they were merging with Florida Light and Power, I thought to myself, THIS IS NOT GOOD. Gulf Power seemed to be a really good company when on its own so why merge with another company that is not as good and doesn’t provide the same level of service. My first disappointment was when I called before Hurricane Sally to advise them the tree limbs had grown over a large section of their lines coming into my neighborhood and requested they trim the trees before hurricane season. Not only did they never trim the trees but they never responded to my multiple telephone calls. Before the merger, they always responded to a customer’s call for assistance and, in most cases, they trimmed the trees. After the storm and several days without power, they made the repair to restore power but as of this writing they have yet to trim the trees. So, here comes another hurricane season and my neighbors and I will loose power for another week or so. Best thing is to pray we don’t have a storm rather than praying Gulf Power/FLP will trim the trees and maintain the lines. It’s really all about the money, not about service. It’s no wonder why whole house generators are becoming so popular.

  26. bob on February 23rd, 2021 9:58 am

    They said that the Natural Gas Plant would save customers money. According to the press release, I would think this plant could save each customer $3 for 1,000 kwh. Just apply those savings to the reserve fund and the problem is solved.

    It just seems that something is not adding up. The utility company does all these things to make us green and tells us how much money we are going to save, but, they keep coming back to the trough for more money.

    I’m confused.

  27. Becky Marie Purinton on February 23rd, 2021 9:51 am

    All I can say is make sure that you put in a complaint to the PSC. They just received an increase. Why should the consumer have to pay for the lack of planning for this company?

  28. REALLY???? on February 23rd, 2021 9:43 am

    YOU HAVE GOT TO BE KIDDING ME?!?!?!? They just got a rate increase only a few months ago. Our summer bill usually isn’t to bad and our winter bill shoots through the roof to pay for our usage from summer and we don’t turn our A/C down that much…usually around 76 degrees. NOW we’re paying the SAME amount winter AND summer. We are on a fixed income. How are we supposed to pay the NEW rate increase?!?!?! Explain that to me MR GULF POWER!!!!!!! By the way…..where is all that FEMA money you received from Hurricane Sally?????????

  29. J.Larry Seale on February 23rd, 2021 9:30 am

    NO way,
    they stil owe us a refund on that subber system
    they put in few years back, and it now in mothball.

  30. aaron on February 23rd, 2021 9:23 am

    why do we allow gulf power to get away with this? they did the same thing for hurricane michael. we did not ask for the storms to hit the panhandle, they just did. now we pay the price a second time? if anything the people in escambia and santa rosa should be paying the extra to pike electric. they are the reason we even got power back at all, not the frauds at gulf power!

  31. Thomas Paine on February 23rd, 2021 9:13 am

    Maybe Gulf Power should budget more effectively to take into account the fact that we are a hurricane-prone area. Maybe I’m crazy.

  32. darlene bracken on February 23rd, 2021 9:11 am

    Just not right .To many having hard times. Not our fault hurricanes comes and destroys our homes and belongings.. Not right for none of us. Hard times

  33. SueB on February 23rd, 2021 9:11 am

    I just filed a complaint online with Florida Public Service Commission against GP wanting more money from customers. Also, complained that PSC would even agree.

  34. SueB on February 23rd, 2021 9:02 am

    No, No, No. Since GP sold to these crooks service is bad. How do customers go about filing a petition to stop increases?

  35. David on February 23rd, 2021 8:36 am

    You all can move to California and pay that pathetic states prices. We have no problem compared to them at all.
    Be thankful you have a company here in Florida that dont flinch when trying to get your power restored.
    Seems everytime someone raises prices on things the little “they are Stealing fro. Us HOBBITS come out crying.
    But eeveryone one wants their own raise…right.
    Borrow some money from Century!
    Life is not free!

  36. Citizen of Escambia county on February 23rd, 2021 8:19 am

    Well, last I heard Gulf Power gave extravagant gifts to its employees for years of service as well as bonuses each year. If they didn’t they would be able to have a “reserve” to pay for hurricane recovery! Giving employees a Rolex watch for working there 25 years is not being a good steward of money. That’s just ridiculous, most employees turn around and sell the watch and pocket the money. Just sayin! I do value the work they do after a storm! Just not to the extent of a Rolex watch for someone working there for so many years!

  37. Henry Coe on February 23rd, 2021 7:45 am

    Of course they do,lol.

  38. Melvin holland on February 23rd, 2021 7:17 am

    alot of folks can barely afford to pay the current bill and having to keep cutting back on everything just to survive and with more storms headed to the Gulf Coast I’m afraid it’s gonna get much worse ? and we all need our power comming into our homes so it’s better that the power company gets prepared now with everything they need to respond to a outage. sounds like we all don’t have much of a choice or say in the matter however it’s all about comfort . and I myself thank the hard working men and women that work on them poles in extreme weather. thanks to you we have power. thank you all.

  39. John D Bodie on February 23rd, 2021 6:20 am

    Well, as I figured. Watch this new company, I promise this is the tip of the iceberg. They are a very crooked organization, greedy. My power was off for 2 weeks after Sally, I have the app that shows daily usage, somehow I was using power and my bill was trough the roof. How’s this ? , the lines were broken and on the ground. Wake up folks, these greedy dogs are stealing us to death. They can do their advertising on television and such which isn’t cheap, why even waste the money on it ? , it’s not like you can get power from someone else. Just like the solar farms, wait about 10 more years or so when the panels need to be replaced due to less efficient output, I am sure it will be a high dollar charge on our bill. Power should be cheaper, we didn’t have the solar farm until a few years ago. We also have natural gas plant. Hmmm.





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