Gulf Power customers frustrated over higher energy bills
PENSACOLA, FL (WEAR) —
Dozens of complaints to the Channel 3 newsroom have come from Pensacola homeowners who are upset over high electricity bills.
A Gulf Power spokesperson said their phones have been ringing nonstop, saying many of the calls coming in are customers asking why their bills are so high.
Expensive energy bills seem to be stretching all over Pensacola.
"Absolutely has to be a mistake somewhere," said Beth Griggs.
Beth Griggs has lived in Pensacola for 55 years.
She lives by herself and spends a lot of time with her granddaughter when she can.
"This year was little tougher, lost my job in October," said Griggs.
That is why it's hard for her to understand why her bill doubled to more than $400.
"I started cashing in pennies and didn't buy many groceries, didn't get my nails done," Griggs said.
She isn't in this bill battle alone.
Dozens of customers are also voicing their concerns on social media.
One customer said he can't buy groceries because he is spending an extra $200.
Another customer posting that her bill is $430 and it's never gone over $250.
We reached out to Gulf Power Communications Manager Jeff Rogers to find out what's causing the problem.
"Our call center has been super busy and nonstop," Rogers said.
He said it's common to see bills go up during winter months with colder temperatures.
"On the morning of January18th, Gulf Power customers used more electricity than they ever had in the history of the company," Rogers explained.
"I actually called the power company and they were like no that's not a mistake, that's what it is," Griggs added.
Rogers said if your bill seems too high, there is help.
"We ask our customers to really pay attention to their thermostat; keep that set and we recommend 68 [degrees]," he said.
He also encourages customers to look into budget billing. He said it will help you monitor and stabilize your bill throughout the year.
"Budget billing helps pull that shock down and averages out your bills for you so you so you can get a more reliable bill," said Rogers.
Rogers said customers who are concerned about their bill should contact Gulf Power. He said they are willing to help in any way they can.