Concerned Georgia Power customers protest rate hike

A group of Georgia Power customers gathered outside of the Public Service Commission in downtown Atlanta Monday afternoon to protest the proposed rate increase.

Georgia Power is looking to increase rates to collect $2.2 billion in revenues over the next three years. That would be about a $10 a month increase for the average customer.

The company says it needs the money to cover costs for storm recovery, cleaning up coal ash, and improvements to the power grid.

Wan Smith, the Just Energy organizer with the Partnership for Southern Equity, said Georgia Power's proposal is egregious and malicious.

"The most important thing to realize is that the fee scale as it is proposed by Georgia Power is regressive," Smith said. "The individuals who use the least amount of electricity are seeing the largest amount of increase. and what that does is disincentivize conservation, energy efficiency."

This protest took place just hours after the Georgia Public Commission hearing.

During the hearing, more than a dozen customers spoke out about how the rate increase would impact them.

Monday's hearing was the first of four public hearings. They will happen every day until Thursday.

The Georgia Public Commission is expected to take a vote next month.