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Hurricane Michael

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Gulf Power storm repairs could top $350 million

Gulf Power, the largest utility in Northwest Florida, expects a final tab of hundreds of millions of dollars from Hurricane Michael.

In a Securities and Exchange Commission filing Wednesday by the utility’s parent company, Gulf estimated that costs of repairing transmission and distribution lines and “uninsured facilities” will total $350 million to $400 million.

The filing by The Southern Company, which is Gulf’s parent, did not provide a detailed breakdown of the costs.

But it said that as of Sept. 30, Gulf Power had $48 million in a property-damage reserve. Under a 2017 rate-settlement agreement, Gulf is able to ask the Florida Public Service Commission for approval to recoup storm-related costs from customers and to replenish the reserve to $40 million. But the filing indicated a decision has not been made.

“The ultimate outcome of this matter cannot be determined at this time,” the filing said.

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The Category 4 Hurricane Michael made landfall Oct. 10 in Mexico Beach and caused massive damage as it tore through parts of Northwest Florida and went into Georgia.

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Republished with permission of the News Service of Florida.

The News Service of Florida provides journalists, lobbyists, government officials and other civic leaders with comprehensive, objective information about the activities of state government year-round.

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