Alabama Power among most reliable, rates below national average
The Alabama Public Service Commission (PSC) has completed a series of informal, public meetings to discuss Alabama Power rates and the way the company is regulated. Here are some things you should know about Alabama Power regarding these issues:
- For decades, the total retail price Alabama Power charges for electricity has been – and remains today – below the national average.
- The state’s regulatory system has helped keep rates affordable. In fact, over the last 30 years, the retail rate system (Rate RSE) impacts to Alabama Power’s rates have averaged less than 1 percent a year.
- Alabama Power has pledged to keep base rates flat in 2013 and is working to keep them flat in 2014.
Our electric service is among the most reliable in the nation.
- The reliability of Alabama Power’s electric service is among the best in the industry, as is our reputation for getting the lights back on after major storms or natural disasters.
- Reliability is important for all of our customers, but it is also vital for the global industries that have located in Alabama and brought quality jobs to our state. Those companies have cited Alabama Power’s high reliability and competitive electricity prices as factors in choosing Alabama for new manufacturing facilities.
We are focused on our customers.
- Alabama Power has consistently ranked among the best in the industry in providing responsive service to our customers.
- Through the company’s network of local offices and our customer service line, 1-800-245-2244, customers may reach us any time of the day or night.
We earn a fair return for exceptional performance.
- Return on equity, or “ROE,” is what Alabama Power is allowed to earn on the portion of our business financed through the issue of the common stock of our parent company, Southern Company. Under our state regulatory process, Alabama Power is allowed – not guaranteed – the opportunity to earn between 13 percent and 14.5 percent ROE.
- In Alabama Power’s case, equity from stockholders represents less than half the money invested in the company, which means we fund our business using less equity than most utilities. A larger part of our capital comes from lower-cost debt, which is borrowed from financial institutions and other sources, and saves our customers money.
- When looking at the total return on all our invested capital – which is a better measure of true earnings – it is less than 8 percent, which is comparable to utilities in the Southeast and around the country similar to Alabama Power.
Our business is open and transparent.
- Alabama Power is one of the most regulated companies in the state, and the company must justify our business decisions to the PSC.
- Alabama Power also regularly reports to a host of other state and federal agencies, including the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) and the Alabama Department of Environmental Management (ADEM). Many of these reports are available to the public.
We are committed to helping customers save money.
- Alabama Power customers are looking for ways to manage their energy use and lower their energy costs. The company wants to be a partner in those efforts.
- Alabama Power has more than 20 energy efficiency programs in place to help customers save money on their power bills. This saves customers enough electricity to power more than 400,000 average homes.