Troy residents paying less for power

Published 5:20 pm Friday, December 25, 2009

Residents in the city of Troy can take solace in having some of the lowest power bills in the state.

At least that’s what Troy Mayor Jimmy Lunsford said, after Alabama Power fuel costs have continued to drop.

“Now that the fuel costs are down, the people in Troy are enjoying the lowest rates, period,” Lunsford said. “You can’t find anybody in Alabama lower.”

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Alabama Power, which is the city of Troy’s power supplier, passes on the costs of its fuel to the city of Troy. Troy then passes those same costs onto its residents.

So, even though the actual power rate, which is 7.8 cents per kilowatt-hour, remains the same, fuel increases or decreases cause fluctuation in power bills.

In the last three months, Lunsford said fuel charges have dropped, giving residents a 10 percent decrease in power bills.

For example, a resident who used 1,000 kilowatts of power in the month of October, paid $106.79 on their utility bill. That same customer then paid $97.56 for the same usage in November.

In December, however, that bill dropped even lower, down to $96.96.

“We’ve decided we would set a rate that didn’t include the fuel cost and flow the cost to the customer,” Lunsford said. “The reason there’s a change is the amount of the fuel cost.”

Fuel costs for Alabama Power dropped last in June, decreasing by close to 2 percent.

The city of Troy last changed its rates in September 2008, increasing from 6.8 to 7.8 cents per kilowatt-hour. That was a 14 percent increase for the city’s residents, a number that had remained constant for years prior to that.

The city of Troy’s power bills include that basic rate, fuel charges and a $7 base rate for all customers.