Gulf Power is seeking approval for a 19.2% base-rate increase from state regulators — and a severe overhaul of its residential rates. Its proposal would yield a 7% bill increase for customers, should it go into effect as requested, on July 1, 2017. The factors driving Gulf Power’s requested rate increase include capital investments, the expiration of long-term sales agreements for coal plants, and Gulf’s desire to modify its residential rate design to — it says — better reflect cost-causation. It is seeking an 11% return on equity and a 6.04% overall rate of return, claiming that flat sales due to the economic recession and energy efficiency have kept it below its authorized return on equity.
Gulf Power’s proposed rate-design changes for residential customers include raising the monthly service charge from $18.85 to $48.03, while reducing the energy charge by approximately 30%. Gulf Power has also proposed creating two new optional demand rates for residential customers, with a demand charge as high as $5.00/kW.
Gulf Power is a subsidiary of Southern Company.