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Power companies may make customers pay for Hurricane Irma

Hurricane Irma
Posted at 8:42 AM, Dec 29, 2017
and last updated 2017-12-29 05:34:53-05

FLORIDA -- Duke Energy and Florida Power & Light are seeking to add a storm recovery fee to customer bills after historic damage caused by Hurricane Irma.

A Duke Energy spokesperson says the fee will add about $5 a month on a typical bill, but that could change in the future.

According to the Bradenton Herald, FPL will request a surcharge equal to $4 a month starting in March 2018 to cover costs from the hurricane.

The charge would then increase to $5.50 a month in 2019.

FPL officials expect that the surcharge, if approved, would go until the end of 2020, when the costs should be fully recovered.

Duke will file for the fee with the Florida Public Service Commission, which will decide whether to allow the add-on. If approved, it will stay on customers’ bills for three years.

FPL hasn’t filed for the surcharge with the commission yet.

Duke sent out more than 12,000 line and field workers to restore power after the storm.

This is the first storm recovery fee the company has requested since the 2004 and 2005 seasons.