Escambia County Calling For State Review Of FPL’s Rates; Century Set To Do The Same

April 6, 2022

Escambia County is set this week to finalize a letter to the Florida Public Service Commission asking them to reconsider Florida Power & Light’s rate structure, and the Town of Century may join other local governments in sending a letter of their own.

Last month, the Escambia County Commission voted to have Chairman Jeff Bergosh draft a letter to the PCS, and that letter will be up for final approval, revisions or disapproval at Thursday’s board meeting. The Century Town Council was set to vote Tuesday night on sending a similar letter, but their meeting was canceled due to weather concerns.

“Over the last several months we have been inundated with angry complaints from our constituents who have pleaded with us to help them get answers as to why their Florida Power and Light bills have increased so dramatically (in some cases more than doubling month over month),” Bergosh states in the opening of the BOCC’s draft letter.

Bergosh asks the PSC to conduct a new FPL rate public hearing and hold it in Escambia County because it’s the largest population center in the Florida Panhandle.

The letter asks for answers on five key points:

  1. Why are our citizens being socially engineered to conserve- by having their rates increase once usage exceeds 1000 Kilowatt hours per month? Why is this being allowed and condoned/encouraged by the PSC?
  2. Why are other energy sources/fuel commodities for electricity generation being excluded in favor of Natural Gas which has seen tremendous price increases—the costs of which are being burdened fully by ratepayers? Why is this being allowed and condoned by the PSC.
  3. Why are our citizens apparently paying the highest rate per 1000 Kilowatt hours billed (residential) in the entire state of Florida?
  4. Why does the PSC consider these rates fair and reasonable given this current economic environment?
  5. Why is FPL Northwest Florida cutting customers’ power off early and not giving customers until 5:00 PM to pay bills that are late? (I have heard that customers’ power is being shut off before 5:00 PM on the last day to pay a late bill, when previously if a customer paid before 5:00 PM the power would not be cut off.)

To read the complete proposed letter from the Escambia BOCC to the PSC, click or tap here.

The Century Town Council will consider drafting a letter to the PSC at their April 19 meeting. Pensacola, Gulf Breeze, Milton and Crestview have already sent similar letters to the state.

Pictured: The entrance to the Gulf Clean Energy Center (formerly known as Plant Crist) as seen Tuesday afternoon. Photo for click to enlarge.


10 Responses to “Escambia County Calling For State Review Of FPL’s Rates; Century Set To Do The Same”

  1. S.G. on June 29th, 2022 8:59 am

    What was FPSC’s response to the questions in his letter?

  2. TJ on April 6th, 2022 7:56 pm

    If you want clean energy America it is going to cost a lot of money to put in windmills and solar panels. No drilling and EPA crackdowns means no new wells, if they drill a well they can’t get the pipeline permits. Plus your banks won’t loan money for expansion of fossil fuel energy ( political correctness ) so oil companies are paying off debt and clean energy mandated projects are being built. Oil and natural gas has doubled. No coal plants to shift to cheaper source as they are converted to Nat Gas or shutdown. They have to process 500,000 tons of ore for one TESLA battery. But we are saving the planet!

  3. fisherman on April 6th, 2022 5:59 pm

    @ Eric
    I would have FPL calibrate the meter as there’s a possibility it’s not recording accurate data. They don’t come out and read them anymore it’s done remotely. Good luck in talking with someone at FPL as their customer service is nonexistent.

  4. Eric on April 6th, 2022 3:35 pm

    @fisherman I have a 900 square foot home. Currently waiting to upgrade to 200 amp service. In the meantime, I do not have a washer or dryer, nor an electric stove. I have a 2 ton high efficiency heat pump that stays on 78 during high Temps and 66 on cold days. Somehow, according to fpl, I’m using more electricity, wattage wise, that I used in my 2400 square foot home that I sold in November, on that had a washer dryer, 4 ton heat pump, 2 refrigerators, 2 large freezers, etc. I literally can’t use the amount of electricity they are claiming, as I only have 100 amp service, with a 100 amp main breaker. To achieve the usage they claim, I would have to have 200 amp service. Facts don’t lie.

  5. SueB on April 6th, 2022 11:08 am

    I sent email to Governor DeSantis in reference to Florida Power & Light NW Florida (FPC NW Fl) expressing my concerns about the five (5) Public Service Commissioners AKA Regulators who were lobbied by FPL and finally persuaded the Commissioners to increase rate hikes to support FPL solar-energy issues and for the residents to pay for the million solar panels in 50 sites across Florida. These five (5) Regulators are responsible for NW Florida residents to be stuck with high electric bills.
    The four (4) year contract that these five (5) Regulators unanimously approved rates costing millions of dollars.
    For now, try to keep your KwH under 1000. Check the web site FPL NW Fl every day to check usage. Electricity if highest on weekdays from Noon to 9 pm (April 1 – Oct 31).

  6. RaD on April 6th, 2022 9:26 am

    @Jason, I agree it is a confluence of factors, not just a rate increase, that is causing people to see the high bills they are receiving however, a 13% increase in electric bills in one year is also unacceptable.

    I would also add the 1000kWhr rate increase hurts those who can afford it the least since on average, they are living in older, less energy efficient homes without heat pumps. Heating a home during very cold weather with plug in space heaters and running electric blankets to keep warm is very expensive.

  7. fisherman on April 6th, 2022 9:07 am

    I’m sorry your power bill is high you have to pay for what you use. Look at your past bill and determine how many KWH you used I’ll bet the use was higher than your lower bill. Wait till summer when your AC is set at 68 and runs 24 hours a day. You have to figure out how to conserve.
    The reason they went to NG is because they want clean air and they drove them away from coal power plants. Now they are pushing electric cars and means to support them nation wide doesn’t exist .North Escambia.Com find someone willing to come forward with copy of electric bill doubling when they used the same KWH. Won’t happen. I also think the PSC is in the pocket of the electric companies as I have NEVER seen them turn down a rate increase.

  8. joy bryant on April 6th, 2022 8:45 am

    Jason -I hate to disagree with you-BUT I sure do–and $14.79 increase in fees is TERRIBL4 – and a close to 50 dollars a month is HORRIBLE-I CHANGED NOTHING and was told I would be on a lesser rate WRONG-we have NO CONTROL like we did have. I can’t use the thermostat that I had installed OR THE WEBSITE I used and was told NO WAY was there a way to change the temperature on my water heater–MY THERMOSTAT IS OFF!!! so now I am really waiting for the rip off bill I will receive. You may be able to afford these bills I SURE CAN’T. We are being screwed by this company pure and simple–I want some CONTROL AGAIN like I used to have-the gas line not far from my subdivision – if it ever blows-WHOA!! No holiday, or after hour rates, holiday rates , high and low period!!!! No water heater control So you calculate all you want but I KNOW WHAT MY BILL IS AND IT WENT UP EVERY MONTH SINCE THEY TOOK OVER AND NEVER ONCE WAS WHAT THEY SAID IT WOULD BE–THEY ARE GREEDY LIARS

  9. Thank you on April 6th, 2022 2:34 am

    I will be surprised if this makes a difference to the politicians and crooks that did this to us. But it is worth a shot. I feel bad for the people living from paycheck to paycheck trying to now figure out how to pay their light bill. This whole situation smells to the high heavens. Should never have happened!

  10. Jason on April 6th, 2022 2:22 am

    Well, aint that the pot calling the kettle black. While the BCC thinks that electric rates shouldn’t increase given the current economic environment, they sure didn’t mind collecting increasing amounts of ad valorem tax dollars during this same period.

    The true facts with the power increase is this – bills did not double because of the rate increase. The rate increased less than 2.5 cents per kilowatt hour. On a 1000kw this results in a $25 increase. FPL also reduced the base rate from $19.20 per month to $8.99 per month – a savings of $10.21. Now when you combine the rate increase with the base rate decrease, a person using 1000kw only saw a $14.79 increase in fees. A person using 2000kw would have a $49.79 increase. Neither increase would result bills doubling.

    Too bad are elected officials didnt take the time to educate folks on how to calculate the true amount of increase on their bills.

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