At this rate
My father once told a joke. Two(fill in ethnic group) men were on a plane flying. An engine flames out. The captain comes on the intercom and re-assures the passengers, says there are still 3 good engines. The flight will just be slightly delayed. Say one hour.
Engine #2 flames out. Captain comes on the intercom and re-assures the passengers. Says the plane still has two good engines. The flight will be delayed now two hours.
Engine#3 flames out. blah, blah, blah.
Engine #4 flames out. One of the two men turns to the other and says. "At this rate we'll be up here all day."
Well kinds of sums up this news in today's Palm Beach Post. FPL aka Florida Power & Light(Or Florida Plunder & Loot I have heard it jokingly called.) wants to extend and increase a charge to its customers. This charge is for the cost of repairs in the wake of last year's two hurricanes and Wilma this year. If approved FPL customers could be paying this charge for 10-11 years.
I'm enough of a realist to know that FPL has to pass on their costs but if hurricane season doesn't lighten up this extra charge could be a fact of life for a very long time.
As the men said we could be up there all day.
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The 2005 hurricane season was just as expensive as last year's, Florida Power & Light Co. said Tuesday, and next month the utility will propose a decade of additional consumer charges to pay for it.
Although the figures are not yet final, the four hurricanes — including an especially destructive one named Wilma — will cost from $800 million to $900 million, FPL President Armando Olivera said.
FPL will propose in January that those costs, along with $295 million for last year's hurricane expenses plus another $400 million to $500 million to help pay for future ones, be covered by selling about $1.6 billion in bonds to be repaid over 10 or 11 years, Olivera said in an appearance before The Palm Beach Post editorial board.
"It's not an easy thing to do, but we looked at all of the alternatives, and storm costs are a huge issue for our state," Olivera said. "You want to have some sort of a reserve; you want to have something in a fund for a lower impact. And I didn't think it was prudent to ask for an increase."
If the Florida Public Service Commission approves the proposal, the average monthly fee of $1.68 that FPL's 4.3 million residential and businesses customers pay would be replaced with a monthly charge of $1.60 that would last as long as the bonds, perhaps until 2017.
During the past 15 months, FPL's customers have been hammered by seven hurricanes, bringing on a wearisome cycle of destruction, power failures and painstaking restoration. Olivera said the experience has shown the company that FPL's system, and its storm recovery procedures, cannot continue to work through the period of intense hurricane activity meteorologists say has begun.
"The model we have is not sustainable," he said.