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ST. PETERSBURG, Florida -- On Wednesday, Duke Energy Florida announced it would issue a credit to customers whose rates were impacted by a decision that extended their billing cycles for one month.

Duke Energy says it recently began a major meter re-route project to maximize efficiencies within its system.

When transitioning customers to a new due date because of the re-route, some customers incurred a bill with more days than a normal billing cycle, which unintentionally put them into a higher rate tier due to additional usage over the extended period.

The extended billing cycle added as many as 12 extra days to the average bill. Duke charges $11.34 for every 100 kilowatt hours up to 1,000 hours, but charges $13.70 for every 100 kilowatt hours above that. With the additional days, some customers could see utility costs increase significantly.

Duke plans to refund customers for charges incurred during a billling cycle change.

See Also: Lawmaker asks for Duke investigation

In response to customer complaints and the concerns of the Florida Public Service Commission, Duke said on Wednesday that it will be issuing a credit to all customers whose bills were affected by the re-route.

"We apologize for any hardships and confusion we have caused our customers, and we will make this right," said Alex Glenn, state president of Duke Energy Florida. "We will continue to work with impacted customers until all credits have been issued. We are also taking steps to ensure that this does not happen again."

Customers who have specific billing questions can call 800-700-8744 from 7 a.m. - 9 p.m. Monday through Friday.

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