PSC Accountability Project FAQ
Why are my bills going up, by how much, and when?
If you are a Georgia Power Customer, you can expect your power bills to rise every year for the next three years.
In December 2019, the Georgia Public Service Commission (PSC) voted to raise the rates of millions of Georgians, granting Georgia Power an additional $1.8 billion in revenue from customers like you over the next three years. Once the rate and fee increases are fully phased in, you can expect to pay $175 more a year on average, according to a report published shortly after the vote by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
Starting in 2020, the typical Georgia Power customer will begin to see their bills rise by about $6 per month. Bills will go up 2-2.5% in 2021 and new residential demand charges will also be phased in starting January 2021. Then, in 2022 bills will rise again by another 4.5-5%
The raises are not guaranteed to stop there. In 2023, Georgia Power could ask the PSC for even more money to pay for its troubled billion-dollar nuclear Plant Vogtle.
What is the Georgia Public Service Commission and why do they matter?
The Georgia Public Service Commission (PSC) is a body of five elected officials who are tasked with ensuring that consumers like you receive safe, reliable, and reasonably priced electric, natural gas, and telecommunications services. Source: Georgia.gov
If you pay a power bill in Georgia, the PSC makes decisions that impact your wallet and the future of renewable energy in our state.
They determine how much you pay on your bill.
Every three years, the PSC hosts a rate case. Your elected Public Service Commissioners must sign off on Georgia Power’s rate changes, and they have approved millions of dollars in rate increases for the company since 2008. In the last five years, Georgia Power’s rates have risen 24 percent. This means they are getting more and more money from their paying customers.
In December 2019, the Georgia Public Service Commission voted to increase the power bills of all Georgia Power customers. The money will generate $1.8 billion for Georgia Power while Georgia Power’s paying customers pick up the bill.
|What Georgia Power asked for||What Public Service Commissioners approved|
In addition to approving rate increases, the PSC and Georgia’s legislature allowed Georgia Power to charge customers in advance to build Plant Vogtle, the nation’s first new nuclear reactors to be built from scratch in 30 years.
Georgia Power customers now pay extra for Plant Vogtle that the company profits from while consumers foot the bill. In 2022, the PSC will consider raising bills again during its Rate Case to pay even more for Plant Vogtle.
How can I vote for PSC candidates?
The five members of the commission are determined by statewide election. First, be sure you are registered to vote. You can register to vote online on the Georgia Secretary of State’s website. Even if you believe you are registered, please take a moment to check your voter registration to be sure!
Second, be sure you know where to vote and when on election day. You can find out where to vote and see a sample ballot on the Georgia Secretary of State website.
|2020 Election Dates|
|What’s happening?||Election Day||Voter Registration Deadline||Early Voting|
|Georgia General Election – The candidate that wins a majority of votes in this election will become the next Public Service Commissioner for that district.||Tuesday, Nov. 3||October 5, 2020||Oct. 12 – Oct. 30|
|Georgia General Runoff Election – If no PSC candidate secures a majority, the top two candidates in that race go up again in a runoff.||Tuesday, Dec 1||October 5, 2020||As soon as possible|
Source: Georgia Secretary of State
How can I find out more about PSC Candidates?
The Georgia Secretary of State lists the following qualified candidates for Public Service Commission, District 4:
Lauren Bubba McDonald Jr. (I)
3394 Orchard Dr, Clarkesville Ga 30523
The Georgia Secretary of State lists the following qualified candidates for Public Service Commission, District 1:
1530 Vassar St, Savannah Ga 31405
Po Box 188, Lakeland Ga 31635
How can I contact the PSC?
Address: 244 Washington St., SW, Atlanta, GA 30334-9052
Phone Number: 404-656-4501
Contact Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
About the PSC Accountability Project
The Georgia PSC Accountability Project is a project led by the Georgia Conservation Voters Education Fund and the Georgia Ethics Watchdog Education Fund. The Georgia Conservation Education Fund works to mobilize Georgians to advance climate and environmental justice through education, advocacy, and other forms of civic engagement. The Georgia Ethics Watchdogs Education Fund is Georgia’s leading organization with the mission of holding local and state government entities and officials accountable to high ethical standards for the citizens of our state. Working together, these entities hold Georgia’s Public Service Commissioners accountable for their votes and actions.