SHREVEPORT, La. -- SWEPCO and CLECO customers will get a break on their monthly bills in the coming months thanks to lower federal taxes, Louisiana Public Service Commissioner Foster Campbell announced Wednesday.

For the average SWEPCO customers, bills will decline more than $13 per month for the next three months. For CLECO customers, bills will go down more than $12 per month for the next 12 months.

To be more specific, an average SWEPCO residential customer using 1,282 kilowatt-hours will receive a credit of $13.62 on their August, September and October electric bills, while an average CLECO residential customer using 1217 kilowatt-hours will get a $12 credit beginning next month and running through July 2020.

Extending the benefit, average SWEPCO bills for November 2019 through July 2020 will reflect reductions of $3.03 each month.

The overall impact is a reduction of $24.4 million for SWEPCO’s 231,000 Louisiana customers and a drop of $84 million for CLECO’s 285,000 customers.

Campbell said he is “happy that we were able to translate these tax cuts into lower” bills during the “hot summer months, when they would have the greatest impact.”

Congress enacted the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act in December 2017. The law reduced the U.S. corporate income-tax rate from 35 percent to 21 percent for many corporate taxpayers effective in January 2018.

Investor-owned utilities regulated by the LPSC were required to adjust their rates to reflect the lower tax rate and refund any taxes collected before the rates were adjusted.

Wednesday, the LPSC voted with Campbell to pass the bulk of the TCJA savings on to ratepayers over a three-month period. 

Malcolm Smoak, SWEPCO president and chief operating officer, said customers will see a “TCJA Refund” line item on their bills starting next month.

Campbell said savings from the federal tax cuts are being shared with customers of SWEPCO, CLECO, Entergy, CenterPoint Energy Arkla, Atmos Energy and other utilities regulated by the Louisiana PSC.


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