Office of Program Policy Analysis and Government Accountability
Office of Program Policy Analysis and Government Accountability

Public Service Commission

For assistance, call 1-800-342-3552 or visit http://www.psc.state.fl.us/

What is the purpose of the commission?

The Florida Public Service Commission (PSC) facilitates the efficient provision of safe and reliable utility services at fair prices. To fulfill its mission, the PSC pursues a number of goals, including
  • streamlining regulatory requirements to provide an open, accessible, and efficient regulatory process;
  • providing a regulatory process that results in fair and reasonable rates while offering regulated utilities an opportunity to earn a fair return on their investments;
  • encouraging efficiency and innovation among regulated utilities; and,
  • encouraging and facilitating responsible use of resources and technology in the provision and consumption of utility services.
The PSC must balance the needs of a utility and its shareholders with the needs of consumers. To achieve this goal, the commission establishes exclusive utility service territories, regulates utility rates and profits, and places an affirmative obligation on the utility to provide service to all who requested it.

How are commissioners appointed?

The commission is composed of a five-member board. Commissioners are appointed to four-year terms by the Governor and are confirmed by the Senate. The Governor appoints commissioners from nominees selected by the Public Service Commission Nominating Council for their knowledge and experience in one or more fields substantially related to the duties and functions of the PSC. These fields include economics, accounting, engineering, finance, natural resource conservation, energy, public affairs, and law.

The chairman, who is elected to a two-year term by majority vote of the commissioners, serves as the PSC's chief administrative officer, sets commission hearings, establishes panels, assigns cases, presides at hearings and conferences, and performs all other duties as prescribed by law.

What does the commission regulate?

The commission has jurisdiction regarding rate structure, territorial boundaries, bulk power supply operations, and power supply planning of municipally owned electric systems and rural electric cooperatives, territorial boundaries and safety over municipally owned natural gas utilities and gas districts. The commission also exercises safety authority over all electric and natural gas systems operating in the state.

The commission does not regulate the rates and service quality of publicly owned municipal or cooperative electric utilities; however, it does have jurisdiction regarding rate structure, territorial boundaries, bulk power supply operations, and power supply planning over numerous municipally owned electric systems and rural electric cooperatives.  The table below describes PSC's regulatory activities as of January 2022.

Public Service Commission Regulatory Activity
Area of Oversight by Utility Type Number
Rates and Services  
Investor-owned water and/or wastewater utilities 147
Investor-owned natural gas utilities   8
Investor-owned electric companies   4
Safety, rate structure, territorial boundaries, bulk power supply, operations and planning  
Municipally-owned electric systems35
Rural electric cooperatives 18
Safety and territorial boundaries  
Municipally-owned natural gas utilities 27
Gas districts  4
Competitive markets  
Competitive local exchange telecommunication companies 249
Pay telephone companies  27
Incumbent local exchange companies  10
Source:  Inside the Florida PSC 2022, Florida Public Service Commission, January, 2022.

 

How effective is the commission in controlling utility rates?

The earnings of the investor-owned utilities are reported to the commission to facilitate ongoing monitoring of the achieved return for each utility. This recurring activity provides information to indicate whether a utility’s rates continue to be fair, just and reasonable, or may necessitate further review and potential adjustment. 

The commission measures the percentage of annual utility increases for average residential usage compared to inflation as measured by the Consumer Price Index (CPI).  For Fiscal Year 2020-21, the commission’s goal was to limit the increase to no more than 1% above the actual index. For Fiscal Year 2020-21, the commission reported a 1.46% decrease for all industries. For Fiscal year 2021-22, the commission's goals once again is to limit the increase to no more than 1% above the CPI.

 

How are these activities funded?

 

Fiscal Year: 2022-23
Fund Dollars Positions
PUBLIC SERVICE COMMISSION
PROGRAM: COMMISSIONERS AND ADMINISTRATIVE SERVICES
EXECUTIVE DIRECTION AND SUPPORT SERVICES
6,437,893
54.00
LEGAL SERVICES
3,131,271
30.00
PUBLIC SERVICE COMMISSIONERS
2,722,800
17.00
PROGRAM: UTILITY REGULATION AND CONSUMER ASSISTANCE
AUDITING AND PERFORMANCE ANALYSIS
2,570,027
27.00
UTILITY REGULATION
12,942,294
146.00
TOTAL
27,804,285
274.00

Updates

The 2022 Legislature enacted Ch. 2022-74Laws of Florida

Lifeline Telecommunications Services. The 2022 Legislature enacted Ch. 2022-80Laws of Florida, to align Florida statutes with Federal Communications Commission (FCC) requirements for the Lifeline program that provides monthly telecommunication services discounts to qualifying low-income customers served by an eligible telecommunications carrier (ETCs). The law requires a Lifeline subscriber to provide proof of continued eligibility for Lifeline service upon request of the ETC or the FCC. Additionally, the law requires any state agency that determines a person is eligible for a Lifeline qualifying program to coordinate with the FCC to verify eligibility for Lifeline service.

 

Where can I find related OPPAGA reports?

A complete list of related OPPAGA reports is available on our website.

Where can I get more information?

Other Reports
Inside the Florida PSC 2022, Florida Public Service Commission.
2021 Annual Report, Florida Public Service Commission.
The Auditor General reports on department operations are available on its website.


Websites of Interest
Florida Public Service Commission, Reports and Other Resources
Federal Energy Regulatory Commission
U.S. Department of Energy

Performance Information


Performance measures and standards for the department may be found in its Long Range Program Plan.

What are the applicable statutes?

Chapters 350 (Florida Public Service Commission), 364 (Communications Services), 365 (Use of Telephones and Facsimile Machines), 366 (Public Utilities), 367 (Water and Wastewater Systems), 368 (Gas Transmission and Distribution), 403 Part II (Electrical Power Plant and Transmission Line Siting), Part VI (Water Supply; Water Treatment Plants), Part VIII (Natural Gas Transmission Pipeline Siting), and 427 Part II (Telecommunication Access System), Florida Statutes

Whom do I contact for help?

Consumer Assistance Line, 1-800-342-3552
Office of the Executive Director, 850-413-6463

Website