(MENAFN Editorial) RALEIGH, N.C., March 2, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Duke Energy Progress today filed new rates for North Carolina customers based on the North Carolina Utilities Commission's (NCUC) order issued Feb. 23. Even with the adjustment, customer rates will remain below the national average.
The NCUC approved the company's partial settlement with the Public Staff, which included costs related to highly efficient natural gas units and four new solar projects.
Also approved by the NCUC are the company's past investments related to environmental compliance with state and federal regulations to permanently close ash basins at eight sites in the Carolinas.
"This transparent and thorough process overseen by the North Carolina Utilities Commission, which includes input from other stakeholders, produced a result that balances the needs of our customers and our company," said David Fountain, Duke Energy's North Carolina president. "This decision helps keep energy costs competitive while giving customers the full benefits of cleaner and more reliable power."
As directed by the NCUC order, new rates will go into effect after final approval from the NCUC.
Rate impact by customer group
The following percentages illustrates the net rate increases by customer group:
Average net rate increase percentage – Years 1-4
Residential – 6.2 percent Small General Service – 5.1 percent Medium General Service – 3.1 percent Large General Service – 3.6 percent
Average net rate increase percentage – After Year 4 Residential – 7.3 percent Small General Service – 6.1 percent Medium General Service – 4.7 percent Large General Service – 5.6 percent
(The numbers above show the average impact of the compliance rates for each customer group. The specific increase or decrease for individual customers will vary depending on the rate they pay and other factors.)
Electric rates will increase by an average of 4.7 percent in the first four years to account for a return of state income taxes, and an additional 1.3 percent average increase thereafter. The annualized bill for a typical residential customer using 1,000 kilowatt-hours (kWh) of electricity per month would increase to $113.49 from the current $108.27. That change includes an increase in the basic customer charge from $11.13 to $14.00 per month.
The final rate order can be viewed at the NCUC website (NCUC Docket No. E-2, Sub 1142).
Additionally, Duke Energy Progress will address customer benefits from the federal tax reform law in a separate tax reform docket with the NCUC.
Helping customers manage their energy costs
Duke Energy shareholders will contribute an additional $2.5 million to help low-income customers in North Carolina save energy and money through home weatherization and energy efficiency improvements. The contribution will expand the already successful "Helping Home Fund," which has helped more than 3,700 North Carolina families since the program launched in 2015.
"We're committed to helping customers minimize the effects of increased electricity costs through energy efficiency programs and assistance for low-income customers," said Fountain.
Customers can learn more about saving energy and money on their bill at duke-energy.com/savings.
Duke Energy Carolinas, which serves 2 million customers in central and western North Carolina, has a separate rate proceeding pending before the NCUC, with an evidentiary hearing scheduled to begin March 5.
Duke Energy Progress
Duke Energy Progress owns nuclear, coal-fired, natural gas, renewables and hydroelectric generation. That diverse fuel mix provides about 12,900 megawatts of owned electric capacity to approximately 1.5 million customers in a 32,000-square-mile service area of North Carolina and South Carolina.
Headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., Duke Energy is one of the largest energy holding companies in the United States. Its Electric Utilities and Infrastructure business unit serves approximately 7.5 million customers located in six states in the Southeast and Midwest. The company's Gas Utilities and Infrastructure business unit distributes natural gas to approximately 1.6 million customers in the Carolinas, Ohio, Kentucky and Tennessee. Its Commercial Renewables business unit operates a growing renewable energy portfolio across the United States.
Duke Energy is a Fortune 125 company traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol DUK. More information about the company is available at .
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