FPL seeks $320 million rate hike for Hurricane Matthew response

MIAMI (WSVN) - Just two months after getting approval for an $811 million rate increase, Florida Power & Light is looking to get more money from Floridians.

The Sun-Sentinel reports that the power company is seeking approval to recoup $320 million spent in the aftermath of Hurricane Matthew back in October. FPL worked to restore power to 1.2 million customers, calling their response after the storm a “massive undertaking.”

The utility said they planned for more than 14,000 employees and contractors for their post-storm planning. FPL said they had to replace 250 miles of wire, more than 900 transformers, 400 poles, and clear vegetation.

FPL filed a rate hike request with the Florida Public Service Commission last week, which would cost typical customers an additional $3.36 per month over the course of a year if approved.

But that would be on top of the $6.93 per month hike approved back in November, which took effect Jan 1. FPL also added a 24-cent “mandated ECCR charge,” which stands for Energy Conservation Cost Recovery. If this latest price hike is approved, the average bill for customers would go from $91.84 in December to $102.37 after March 1.

The storm brushed to the east of South Florida, more severely affecting customers in the central and north parts of the state. This means South Florida customers will be asked to pay a disproportionate amount, considering fewer than 150,000 homes lost power in the tri-county area, according to the Sun-Sentinel.

An FPL spokesman contends that when past storms affected South Florida, customers throughout the state helped pay for recovery efforts equally.

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