Nuclear Cost Recovery

Duke Progress Energy and Florida Power and Light each want to construct two new nuclear plants. Duke asked regulators for $4.73 a month for permitting and planning costs. FP&L asked for $1.65 for every thousand kilowatts used.

AARP has been fighting the charges.

"It's fundamentally unfair. We consider it actually outrageous that people are paying for a possibility of a nuclear power plant being build and frankly all the costs and all the risk is coming on the back of the consumer," said AARP Spokesperson Charles Millstead.

AARP isn’t alone. The Florida Retail Federation says the monthly charges mount up for retailers.

"All costs for any kind of business whether a retailer or a law firm. When your costs go up, you have to pass it along to those who pay the bills. We don't want to do that, but you don't really have any choice," said Rick McAllister.

After hearing a case in October, the Florida Supreme Court is still considering whether the nuclear cost recovery is even constitutional.

Dwight Dudley was sworn in as a new House Member from Pinellas County last week. Repealing advanced nuclear costs was a key in his campaign.

"And I will repeal the nuclear fee".

Both FPL and Duke Progress say that having customers pay up front will lower the costs later.

"And new nuclear units in Turkey Point, we anticipate over the life of those units, would save fifty-eight billion dollars in fuel costs," said Peter Robins.

But AARP says that the plants coming on-line is a big "If".

Progress will use about 70% of the additional cost recovery to plan for two new nuclear plants, while FPL will use just 10% on planning. The rest will go toward repairs and upgrades for both companies.