ATLANTA (WAOK/AJC) Look for lower bills from Georgia Power by June instead of July. Georgia utility regulator Chuck Eaton on Thursday called for Georgia Power to start cutting what it charges customers for fuel by June 1.

The proposed average reduction would amount to $8 a month.

“We agree with Commissioner Eaton’s desire to see that customers get the benefit of the fuel decrease as soon as possible,” Georgia Power spokeswoman Valerie Hendrickson said.

Georgia Power said in March it was reducing fuel charges — the amount it pays for natural gas, coal, nuclear and renewable fuels to make electricity — on customer bills by $567 million a year over the next two years. That would result in a 6 percent drop in a typical monthly bill of 1,000 kilowatt hours.

According to the AJC, Georgia Power filed the information with the state’s Public Service Commission, which will have to approve the proposed fuel rate decrease after holding hearings in early June. Eaton is asking that the PSC approve the rates as filed so Georgia Power can begin lowering bills in June. If charges need to be adjusted, that modification can be made after the hearings.

“We have to get lower rates implemented as soon as possible,” Eaton said. “Let’s do it during the summer months when people’s bills are at the highest.”

Hendrickson said Georgia Power would begin working with the PSC staff to implement the proposed fuel rate decrease by Eaton’s suggested June 1 date.

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