Florida’s utilities are trying to raise our utility rates to benefit investors and fossil fuel interests. If we don’t speak up, our bills will go up, and we can’t afford to line corporations’ pockets.
Florida Power & Light and the Tampa Electric Company are seeking rate increases that directly affect those Floridians least able to afford them. By raising rates, increasing minimum bills, and limiting assistance programs for customers struggling to pay bills, private utilities are putting profits above people.
The Florida Public Service Commission is a politically appointed council that regulates all investor-owned utilities in Florida. This includes electricity, natural gas, water, and telecommunication services. They will be hearing rate cases over the summer and will ultimately decide whether or not FPL and Tampa Electric Company can raise rates.
Floridians are just beginning to recover from a pandemic that created financial hardships for countless families and businesses. Over the course of COVID-19, utility companies have disconnected power for 600,000+ families and businesses, creating a crisis for so many Floridians during such a challenging time. Now, these same utilities are asking state officials to grant them billions of dollars in rate increases on Floridians.
Florida Power & Light plans to take $2 billion from customers by raising power bills by up to 18%. FPL and their parent company NextEra are already one of the largest and most profitable energy companies in the United States.
This power bill increase is not yet final. Floridians will have the option to speak out in opposition to FPL’s plan in June and July of 2021. We need your voice now.
WHAT YOU CAN SAY
The Florida Public Service Commission regulates how much utilities can charge you and what they can spend that money on. Before they make any decision, they need to hear from Florida Power & Light customers like you. Public testimony is the best way to tell your story and share why you oppose power bill increases. Please use your personal story, but consider the following talking points:
- FPL wants to raise prices so they can send more money back to their shareholders. FPL does not deserve a raise while Floridians are still struggling to get back on their feet in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.
- FPL claims their rates are the lowest in the country, but their bills are among the highest! FPL customers consume more energy than average, partly because the company only invests 5% of the national average on energy efficiency improvements.
- FPL is asking for extra money to build new fossil fuel infrastructure, describing them as “clean energy centers.” Natural gas (extracted mainly by out-of-state fracking) is not “clean energy.” FPL should not push the cost of its investment in polluting fossil fuels onto Florida’s working families (or onto its customers).
- Instead of giving themselves a raise, FPL should focus on decreasing bills for the millions of Floridians struggling to get back on their feet in the wake of the COVID-19 crisis.
- FPL invests less in energy efficiency improvements for low-income customers than virtually any other utility. If FPL is going to raise rates, they owe it to customers who are already facing higher-than-average energy bills to invest in improvements that can lower customers’ energy use and associated bills.