Georgia Power Customers to Receive $1.2B in Benefits from the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act
Thursday, March 8th, 2018
Georgia Power has completed an assessment of the impact of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act for the company – including approximately $1.2 billion in benefits for customers. The benefits were confirmed as part of an agreement with Georgia Public Service Commission Staff and include approximately $130 million in reduced taxes on financing costs for the Vogtle nuclear expansion; $330 million in direct credits to customers as a result of lower federal income tax rates over the next two years and approximately $700 million in future benefits to be addressed in the company's next base rate case in 2019, which also includes the benefits of last week's reduction in state of Georgia income tax rates. If approved by the Georgia PSC, the typical residential customer using an average of 1,000 kilowatt-hours per month could receive approximately $70 in refunds over the two-year period.
"We are committed to offering the highest customer value with rates below the national average, and we're pleased to be able to continue to pass the benefits of the new tax laws on to our customers," said Paul Bowers, chairman, president and CEO of Georgia Power. "We appreciate the collaborative effort with Georgia PSC Staff to evaluate the new tax laws and reach a joint agreement, which we hope the Commission will review and approve as the best way to deliver benefits to customers as quickly as possible."
Today's announcement marks the second substantial, positive impact for Georgia Power customers tied to the new tax laws. In January, Georgia Power announced that customers would pay $139 million less than expected in 2018 for the Vogtle nuclear expansion currently under construction due to changes in federal tax laws and full receipt of the Toshiba parent guarantee payments. Beginning in April, the typical residential customer using 1,000 kilowatt-hours per month will pay $2.70 less than expected per month in financing costs for the Vogtle project. Additionally, Georgia Power bill credits totaling $188 million were approved by the Georgia PSC as part of its order to continue construction of Vogtle 3 & 4 as a direct result of the Toshiba parent guarantee payments for the Vogtle project. The credits, amounting to $75 per individual customer, will be distributed across three separate Georgia Power bills in 2018, with the first $25 credit appearing in the coming months.
Georgia Power is currently authorized by the Georgia PSC to earn a return on equity of 10 percent to 12 percent per year. The company works to efficiently manage its business while providing customers with reliable and affordable service and recently announced a 2018 refund of $43.6 million attributed to the company earning above its allowed range in 2016. Refunds are currently in progress and typical residential customers can expect to see a credit of approximately $9.50 on Georgia Power bills issued in March.