First-quarter earnings for Progress Energy fell $6 million from a year earlier, a drop the utility attributed to high demand in winter 2010 due to extreme weather. The utility reported first-quarter earnings for 2011 at $184 million, or 62 cents a share. Last year, first-quarter earnings reached $190 million, or 67 cents a share.
"We are on track in meeting our financial goals and our shareholder expectations, even as weather returned to a more normal range from the extreme cold of early 2010," said Bill Johnson, Progress Energy chairman, president and CEO. "We continue to see modest growth and signs of recovery in the Carolinas and Florida." For example, Progress Energy Florida said it gained an average net increase in the latest quarter of 8,000 customers compared with the year-ago period.
Progress Energy Florida also announced this week that it is seeking a decrease in its nuclear cost recovery fee from $5.53 per 1,000 kilowatt hours of usage to $5.20. If approved by the state Public Service Commission, the average households will save about 33 cents a month on their utility bills. The fee is charged customers to cover costs associated with the utility's proposed nuclear power plant in Levy County.