Georgia Power Co. has filed a request with the Georgia Public Service Commission to increase customer rates by 12% over the next three years.

Georgia Power said that the increase would help pay for system improvements and help deal with higher costs to allow higher profits.

The Georgia Public Service Commission will likely to vote on the plan in December and new rates taking effect in January.

However, changes are likely before any vote. A residential customer who uses 1,000 kilowatt hours of electricity per month pays Georgia Power an average of $128 a month now, Chief Financial Officer Aaron Abramovitz said Friday. Under the plan, that would rise by $14.32 in 2023, reaching a total of $16.29 over the three-year period.

The Public Service Commission has already approved plans for the company to increase rates by $3.78 a month as soon as the first of two new nuclear units being built at Plant Vogtle come on line.

The company is also expected to  file another rate increase in 2023 to recover the cost of the coal and natural gas it uses to fuel its power plants.

The company says it needs more money to keep making improvements to the transmission and distribution grid, retire old coal plants, acquire electricity from new sources and upgrade customer-facing computer systems. It wants nearly $100 million more each year just to cover inflation for what it has to buy and spend.