Georgia Power asked the Georgia Public Service Commission (PSC) for permission to increase its base rates about $482 million, or 6.1 percent. The request is being made to allow the company to recover the costs of recent and future investments in infrastructure — including environmental controls, transmission and distribution, power generation and smart grid technologies — required to maintain reliability and customer service.
The proposed change in rates would be effective Jan. 1, 2014.
If the request is approved, the typical residential customer using 1,000 kilowatt-hours per month would see an increase of about 6.7 percent, or $7.84.
Over the past 26 years, Georgia Power's total retail rate has averaged more than 13 percent below the national average. Since 1990, its base price has increased by 23 percent, compared to a 76 percent increase for general inflation. In fact, the company's total retail rate, which includes base rate and fuel costs, has lagged the rate of inflation for the same time period.
The PSC will hold public hearings in October and November 2013. A final decision is expected Dec. 17, 2013.
Georgia Power is the largest unit of Southern Co., which serves 2.4 million customers in all but four of Georgia's 159 counties.