The first of three $25 credits for the Vogtle nuclear expansion will be applied to Georgia Power customers’ bills beginning this month. $75 in total 2018 bill credits, or $188 million overall, were approved by the Georgia Public Service Commission (PSC) as part of its order to continue construction of Vogtle 3 & 4 in December 2017. The credits are a direct result of parent guarantee payments for the project from Toshiba available due to the strength of the original contract for the project and protections in place for Georgia electric customers.
Additionally, the Georgia PSC today approved a plan to deliver $1.2 billion in customer benefits due to the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. The benefits were confirmed in March as part of an agreement with Georgia PSC 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. Under the plan, 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.
From the beginning of the Vogtle expansion, Georgia Power has worked with the Georgia PSC to pursue all available benefits for customers and minimize the impact of the new units on electric bills. In addition to the 2018 bill credits, the company recently announced a lower projected rate impact for customers of 9.8 percent with more than half of this impact already in place on bills. This projected rate impact is well below original projections of approximately 12 percent thanks to new federal tax laws, anticipated customer benefits from federal production tax credits, interest savings from loan guarantees from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), and the fuel savings of nuclear energy.
Customers will also save money throughout 2018 following the recent approval by the Georgia PSC of Georgia Power’s updated 2018 Nuclear Construction Cost Recovery (NCCR) tariff. The tariff allows the company to collect financing costs for the Vogtle expansion every month, a structure which saves customers hundreds of millions of dollars by reducing financing and borrowing costs, while also phasing the new units into rates over time helping to avoid “rate shock” once the new units come online. As a result of the Toshiba parent guarantee payments and changes in federal tax law, customers will pay $139 million less than expected in 2018 for the Vogtle project with the typical residential customer using 1,000 kilowatt-hours per month paying $1 less each month than they did in 2017.
To learn more about Georgia Power’s commitment to safe, clean, reliable and affordable energy, including the Vogtle 3 & 4 nuclear expansion, visit www.GeorgiaPower.com.