400+ Floridians Tell State Public Service Commission To Stop TECO Rate Hikes

Since January 2019, the average TECO bill has increased 62%, driven by a reliance on costly fossil fuels; the utility’s latest petition could raise rates again
Published Dec 1, 2023
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Climate and Energy

Since January 2019, the average TECO bill has increased 62%, driven by a reliance on costly fossil fuels; the utility’s latest petition could raise rates again
Since January 2019, the average TECO bill has increased 62%, driven by a reliance on costly fossil fuels; the utility’s latest petition could raise rates again

Tampa, FL — More than 400 residents and one Hillsborough County Commissioner are demanding that the state Public Service Commission reject a petition by Tampa Electric (TECO) to shortcut its base electricity rate hearing process which, if approved, would make it easier for TECO to raise residential electricity rates for the next two to four years. Since January 2019, the average TECO bill has increased 62%, driven by a reliance on costly fossil fuels. Commenters overwhelmed a on the proposal which closed last night.

Hillsborough County is home to almost 700,000 TECO customers and has no plan to move off climate-killing fossil fuels or ensure affordable energy. Advocates are calling on the County Commission to pass a climate plan that moves off fossil fuels, increases energy efficiency, and lowers energy bills.

Food & Water Watch Senior Florida Organizer Brooke Ward issued the following statement:

“Hillsborough County residents are paying some of the highest energy bills in the nation, as our dangerous reliance on fossil fuels spikes bills and plummets us further toward climate chaos. The state Public Service Commission must listen to Floridians loud and clear: it’s time to stop for-profit utility price gouging. Here in Hillsborough County, the County Commission must take action against the intertwined climate and energy affordability crises. Chair Hagan must pass a comprehensive climate plan to move off fossil fuels, increase energy efficiency and reduce energy costs now.”
Every two to four years, utilities enter into an agreement to set the base rates for the next two to four years. TECO is projected to file its next base rate case in 2024. If granted, the utility’s — filed in October — would avoid the standard cost of service study, risking strapping residential customers with higher rates and a greater energy burden than industrial and commercial customers. The Public Service Commission will hold a hearing on TECO’s petition on January 10.

Press Contact: Phoebe Galt [email protected]

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