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Entergy: New fees coming to your summer power bills

1 year 5 months 3 weeks ago Friday, June 03 2022 Jun 3, 2022 June 03, 2022 11:11 AM June 03, 2022 in News
Source: WBRZ

BATON ROUGE - Entergy is blaming a spike in natural gas costs and storm recovery expenses for an increase coming to customers' power bills this summer.

The company said customers who consume about 1,000 kWh of electricity each month can expect to see a roughly $15 increase to the "fuel adjustment" charge on their June bills.

According to a news release from Entergy, a surge in fuel costs compared to last year would translate to a roughly $25 increase in June. The company said it is deferring about $10 of that cost for "future recovery" on later bills.

Entergy said it would continue to pass that cost on to customers until there is "some relief on this commodity pricing."

In addition to the inflated fuel costs, Entergy is adding another surcharge—related to repair costs after the 2020 and 2021 storm seasons—to its customers bills starting in June. That additional fee was approved by the Louisiana Public Service Commission in February and will come out to about $10 on each bill over the next 15 years.

Entergy refused WBRZ's request for an interview about the charges Friday.

Read the full announcement below.

To our valued customer,

I wanted to inform you of two factors that will impact your bills in the coming months.

First, the cost of natural gas, which we use to operate numerous power generation facilities, continues to rise. Natural gas prices in April of 2022 were more than double those in April of 2021 and three times higher than April 2020. As a result, these higher-than normal costs will be seen on customer bills as increases to the Fuel Adjustment throughout the summer months and until there is some relief on this commodity pricing. Higher natural gas pricing is a factor that our customers should account for in their budgeting through the summer. For a customer consuming 1,000 kWh this would translate to roughly a $25 increase in June. Entergy Louisiana is deferring recovery of approximately $10 of that increase from June bills for future recovery leaving approximately $15 increase on June bills.

We will continue to work with the Louisiana Public Service Commission to spread out natural gas costs over several months, rather than placing them all on one bill.

Second, the severe weather that has impacted our region over the past two years, including hurricanes Laura, Delta, Zeta and Ida along with Winter Storm Uri have brought unprecedented challenges to every corner of our state.

Damages caused by these events were widespread and, in some instances, required an entire rebuild of our electrical infrastructure. Severe storms like those seen in 2020 and 2021 are an unfortunate reality to our portion of the country and like many of you, we also must do what is necessary to recover, rebuild and harden our system ahead of the next weather event.

Our team worked hand-in-hand with the Commission to help mitigate the impact of those restoration charges on our customers. After a thorough review, the LPSC approved earlier this year our plan to securitize those funds and spread those costs over a 15-year span, ensuring that our customers will pay the lowest possible price and incur a smaller burden per month on their bills.

The securitization approved by the Commission removes Entergy Louisiana’s profit on investment and is expected to save customers approximately $2 billion relative to traditional utility financing.

On average, a typical customer using 1,000 kWh can expect to see a roughly $9-10 increase on their Entergy bills beginning in June to go towards those restoration costs.

Also of note, the charges for hurricanes Katrina and Rita rolled off customer bills in 2018 and the charges for Gustav and Ike, which started in 2010, will expire later this summer.

It is important to note that Entergy does not profit off either natural gas price increases collected through the fuel adjustment or storm recovery costs. We will continue to do everything we can to assist those who are burdened by these increases along with the LPSC and our community partners.

We know these are difficult times; that’s why we wanted to give notice before these costs are seen on bills. Further, we have made several flexible payment options available to help those facing economic hardships.

We offer customers a number of bill payment assistance plans, including deferred payment arrangements for up to 12 months and payment extensions with waived late fees.

Customers can visit entergy.com/mypaymentoptions to find an option that best fits their needs.

Additionally, we partner with many agencies across the state to help qualifying individuals receive payment assistance. For a full set of details, and to see what programs are available in your area, click here.

I want to again thank you for your patience, understanding and sense of community during what was a difficult time.

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