Georgia Power to increase rates for customers

Published: May. 17, 2023 at 10:35 AM CDT
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COLUMBUS, Ga. (WTVM) - Georgia Power customers get ready to pay more. The utility giant is increasing prices by 12 percent beginning in June.

Although Georgia Power says rising costs of fuel is forcing the increase, with the temperatures heating up, that’s little comfort to some customers. News Leader 9′s Amaya Graham breaks down the numbers.

Five Republican commissioners voted unanimously for Georgia Power to collect an additional $6.6 billion from its nearly 3 million customers over the next three years. What it means for you, monthly utility bills will go up by an average of sixteen dollars.

Georgia power customers will be paying 12 percent more, starting June 1. A typical residential bill will rise to $147.50 a month, that’s nearly 16 bucks from the current bill of $131.60. News leader 9 spoke with a single mother who says another increase on bills is bad news for her and others.

‘’It makes me feel bad because I’m a single parent with three children, and I don’t have the help,’’ says Georgia resident Jessica McCune.

News Leader 9 spoke with Georgia Power spokesperson John Kraft, who says the hike is happening due to the higher cost of fuel.

‘’Just as Georgians saw increased prices at the gas pump in 2022, Georgia Power experienced the same for the fuels that we use, particularly natural gas. We use natural gas in generating electricity for our customers so that’s what this is about, and it’s important to note the company under state law is not allowed to earn any profit on this fuel cost recovery,’’ says Kraft.

Kraft tells news leader nine that this increase will last more than a year.

‘’To make this less of an impact on customers, were spreading the recovery period over three years instead of two so that way, it will help to lower the cost for customers,’’ says Kraft.

Residents say this hike is rather timely, with the hot summer months ahead.

‘’I really don’t think they should go up, you don’t need to keep going up because people can’t afford it. I mean groceries are already high, everything is high,’' says Georgia resident Danielle Jones.

Georgia power will also raise fuel cost discounts for low-income senior citizens, from $6 a month to $9.50 a month. Kraft says there are still many ways to save on your power bill.

‘’As we’re coming into hot weather, that’s a perfect time to make sure air conditioners are running efficiently. We recommend a setting of around 78 degrees, and augment that with fans that use much less energy, but can help you feel you have a programmable thermostat. To take advantage of this instability, manage your energy use throughout the day,’' says Kraft.

The spokesperson for Georgia Power says, they offer many ways for people to save, and if you are struggling to make payments, they do offer energy assistance programs.