Yeah, that’s right. 3 Sucks. And that’s letting them off light.
Several years back, Georgia Power took over Savannah Electric, and since then, prices have been steadily increasing while quality of service has been in rapid decline.
Earlier today, July 5, my power went out. It also went out on July 3. It also went out on July 2. It also went out on July 1. It also went out June 30.
That means that so far in July, it has gone out four out of five days, and it has gone out five of the last six days.
I’ve checked with my neighbors, and their power has gone out as well, so it’s not just me– it’s everyone in my neighborhood, or at least on my block.
Every time the power goes out, I have to go around and reset clocks. Lots of them. Fridge, coffee maker, radios, etc. It’s a real pain in the butt. Every time the power goes out and comes back on, it puts extra and unnecessary strain on my home electronics, causing all my computers to forcefully shut down and then power back on when the restored power surges down the line. Every time the power goes out, my house heats up very, very fast, and my air conditioning has to work extra hard and extra long to return my house to the pre-power-loss temperature. Every time my power goes out, my freezer stops making ice, my fridge cools, and my food starts to spoil.
It doesn’t make sense that the power went out in the last five out of six days. The temperature and humidity, in Savannah terms, has been low. 90 degree days, 80 degree humidity. We’ve only had one storm. At the end of June, we had a good week-long run where it was in the high 90s, and we didn’t experience a single outage.
Beyond that, Georgia Power has this crazy graduated billing wherein during the summer months, they nearly double the price once you meet a certain threshold (very easy to do in a big old inefficient house like ours and all our neighbors’ and, well, just about all of our Established-In-1733 city).
Furthering the suckedness that is Georgia Power is their bills. Their bills are miserably inadequate at best. Basically, the bill consists of four line items:
- Current Service- The amount due for the actual power used (although this is very, very misleading, and fails to include hidden fees– one of which happens to be 46.5% of the actual energy cost).
- Environmental Compliance Cost – A tariff implemented to allow for recovery of costs related to environmental controls mandated by state and federal regulations. This charge is 6.1246% of the “Base Charge” ($7.50/month for the pleasure of doing business) + Current Service + DSM charge (Demand Side Management Residential Rider– whatever the hell that is)
- Franchise Fee – Compensation paid, apparently for the city of Savannah, for utility companies’ use of city property and right of way. 2.5084% of the total revenue.
- Sales Tax – We all know what this is. But the nice part is that we pay sales tax on the Environmental Compliance Cost, along with the Franchise Fee. Gotta love being taxed on taxes.
On June 30, I emailed Georgia Power to ask them exactly how they come up with my bill. They told me they would get back to me within one business day. They never did. Here is my email:
I searched all over your website and cannot find the answers to my questions. Your prompt response is appreciated in this matter.
I am trying to figure out how my bill is calculated because, according to my math and information provided by the Georgia Public Service Commission, it appears as though I am paying more anticipated.
Can you please tell me how the “Current Service” total from my bill is calculated?
Please be sure to include the Base Charge, the price amount I pay per kilowatt hour (including variable pricing due to usage levels), as well as the Demand Side Management Residential Rider amount, the Fuel Cost Rider, and any other fees or charges that impact the “Current Services” field on my bill.
Additionally, please include how the Environmental Compliance Cost is calculated, as well as the Franchise fee, and the tax rate I am being charged.
I have to go now, for it is raining lightly and I expect the power to go out any moment. Coming in Part II of Georgia Power Sucks, Sucks, Sucks: A detailed breakdown, the best I can, of the exorbitant fees Georgia Power includes as part of our “Current Service.”