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Commentary, sarcasm and snide remarks from a Florida resident of over thirty years. Being a glutton for punishment is a requirement for residency here. Who am I? I've been called a moonbat by Michelle Malkin, a Right Wing Nut by Daily Kos, and middle of the road by Florida blog State of Sunshine. Tell me what you think.

Saturday, September 02, 2006

The big break

I wouldn't take it to the bank quite yet.

Your utility bill is going down next year.

And it's going to stay down even when Florida Power & Light Co. asks for more money to pay for a new natural gas plant that will open in May.

FPL said Friday that a monthly customer bill of 1,000 kilowatt hours will drop almost $2 — to $106.68 from $108.61 — starting Jan. 1.

Although 1,000 kilowatt hours is the standard unit for measuring these costs, FPL customer bills average 1,183 kilowatt hours a month. That means the average bill will fall to $128.97 from $131.26.

Credit a quieter storm season, for one. Florida isn't reeling from a spike in natural gas and oil prices, which is what happened last year after Hurricanes Katrina and Rita slammed into oil and gas rigs off the Gulf Coast, choking off supplies to the state.

Also, world fuel markets aren't as volatile as they have been in the recent past, FPL spokesman Mayco Villafana said.

The $1.93 decrease also can be attributed to FPL's power plants, which operate better than they did five years ago, Villafana said.

FPL and the state's other investor-owned utilities, such as St. Petersburg-based Progress Energy Florida, on Friday gave state utility regulators their projected fuel costs for 2007. The state Public Service Commission will take up the issue during three days of hearings that start Nov. 6 and will issue a decision Nov. 8 about what each utility can charge.

Utilities do not pay for the cost of fuel; the amount is passed on to consumers. If fuel prices increase as they have done significantly in the past, consumers pay for that. If prices go down, so should utility bills.
Don't mind me, but I'll believe the decrease news when it is actually approved. Gas prices are fluctuating at present, there's more volatility in the Middle East than normal because of Lebanon/Israel, Iraq and Iran. Plus just the usual speculators are out there trying to make a buck. TFM will see what happens in November.

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