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FPL Predicts Smaller Rate Increase For 2013

MIAMI  (CBSMiami) - The news is good, sort of, for customers of Florida Power and Light. Rates are still expected to increase in 2013, according to filings by the utility with the Public Service Commission, but according to FPL's calculations, not by as much as first expected.

FPL last month projected that a residential customer who uses 1,000 kilowatt hours of electricity a month would see a $2.48 increase next year. But in a filing Friday with the Florida Public Service Commission, the utility projected that a 1,000-kilowatt hour bill will increase by $1.41 a month, or about 1.5 percent.

FPL's projection looks at various costs that show up on customers' bills, including base rates, fuel costs and nuclear-power projects. FPL and other utilities have benefited from relatively low costs of natural gas, which is used to fuel power plants.

FPL also filed a document Friday indicating it will seek to pass along $150.7 million in nuclear-project costs to customers in 2013. About $130 million of that total would go toward upgrade projects at existing plants.

The remainder would go toward trying to get licenses for two planned reactors at the company's Turkey Point complex in Miami-Dade County.

Such costs for the future reactors have been highly controversial, in part because there is no guarantee FPL will ever build the project.

The News Service of Florida contributed to this report.


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