FMPA Weekly | April 27, 2009 | Member Edition

FMPA Weekly

A weekly e-newsletter for FMPA members

April 27, 2009





Cane Island Unit 4

The South Florida Water Management District and Osceola County both inspected and approved the silt fence at Cane Island Unit 4 last week. As a result, FMPA was able to issue a Notice to Proceed to Zachry last Thursday. The notice is FMPA’s final approval for Zachry to begin construction.


Board of Directors

FMPA’s Board of Directors met last Thursday for a special-called meeting to appoint a Nominating Committee. The members appointed Gregg Griffin of Green Cove Springs, Howard McKinnon of Havana and Rick Horst of Ocala to the Committee.


ARP Executive Committee

The ARP Executive Committee met last Thursday and approved action items including: 1) a rate smoothing option, 2) selection of Swap Financial Group, LLC for swap advisor services, 3) authorization to investigate a long-term plan for interest rate swaps, 4) an information systems audit, 5) selection of Black & Veatch as a consultant for the solar photovoltaic project, and 6) participation in the Florida Transfer Capability Determination Group. Two additional action items were added to the agenda including: 1) development of a request for proposals to select a firm that would evaluate FMPA’s operations to identify areas that could be more efficient, and 2) formation of a committee that would review the All-Requirements Project to determine if it should continue in its present form. These items were tabled and will be discussed again at the ARP Executive Committee meeting on May 28.


FMPA Web Site Redesign

Bree Balchunas, Jeff Hanson and Manny Santos recently kicked off planning for a redesign of FMPA’s Web site. The team is currently in the initial stages of planning the site’s content and structure.


NERC Compliance Audits

Doug Smith recently visited several FMPA member cities to assist with preparations for their North American Electric Reliability Corporation audits.





Transmission Access Policy Study Group

Frank Gaffney travels to Benton, Mo., on Monday to represent FMPA at a meeting of the Transmission Access Policy Study Group (TAPS). TAPS is an informal association of transmission-dependent electric utilities that supports competitive wholesale electric markets.


All-Requirements Bonds

The All-Requirements Project closes a $169,715,000 bond issue on Tuesday. Of those bonds, $15,235,000 is federally taxable. The bonds will fund Cane Island Unit 4 construction. Contact: Janet Davis


Florida Reliability Coordinating Council Board of Directors

Nick Guarriello will attend the Florida Reliability Coordinating Council Board of Directors meeting on Tuesday in Tampa.


Business Planning and Budget Committee

The Business Planning and Budget Committee has scheduled a workshops on Tuesday through Friday for the All-Requirements Project Budget cost center teams. The agenda listing the dates, times and subjects of the workshops will be posted on the Member Portal later today. The teams will meet again May 12 to May 14 for finalization of budget costs to present to the Board of Directors on May 21.


Solar Photovoltaic Project

Tom Reedy, Michele Jackson and Sharon Smeenk meet with Black & Veatch on Wednesday in the first floor conference room at 8 a.m. for a kickoff meeting for the solar photovoltaic project. The group will meet with Q-Cells Solar, a potential solar vendor.


Chair Committee

The Chair Committee meets Wednesday in the Board room at 10:30 a.m. to draft a contract for Nick Guarriello to serve as FMPA’s permanent General Manager and CEO. The contract will be presented to the Board of Directors at its meeting on May 28.


Joint Transmission Operations

Representatives of Beaches Energy Services, Homestead, Kissimmee Utility Authority, New Smya Beach and Vero Beach meet Wednesday in the first floor conference room at 11 a.m. to discuss a potential joint transmission operation program. The program would establish a single, joint transmission operator that would be responsible for meeting the North American Electric Reliability Corporation standards. The group had an initial meeting March 23 and expressed interest in developing the program.


Pooled Loan Program Task Force

The Pooled Loan Program task force meets Thursday to discuss issues associated with the program. Members of the newly formed task force include: Jim Atz, Janet Davis, Nick Guarriello, Mark Larson, Ellen Lindsay, Rich Popp, Michell Ramos and Mike Siefert.


Independent Financial Auditor

FMPA interviews two independent financial auditor candidates on Thursday. The candidates are Purvis Gray and Company and Virchow Krause and Company. The Audit Risk Oversight Committee met for a special meeting on April 16 and selected these two candidates.


Energy Auditors Roundtable

Thursday is the deadline to register for FMPA’s next Energy Auditors Roundtable. The roundtable will be held May 14 in Winter Park at 10 a.m. Participants will discuss conservation programs, industry practices and other topics related to energy audits. To register, visit FMEA’s” rel=”nofollow”>>FMEA’s Web site.





Tart Retires from OUC

Thomas Tart, vice president of govement and regulatory relations for Orlando Utilities Commission (OUC), retires on Friday after serving OUC since 1986. Tart served as OUC’s general counsel for 21 years before taking on his current role in January 2008. Tart is well known in Tallahassee and Washington, D.C., for his lobbying efforts on behalf of municipal electric utilities. He eaed his bachelor’s degree in business at the University of Florida and a Juris Doctorate from Stetson University College of Law. Prior to joining OUC, he was a partner of Guey and Handley in Orlando.


FERC Chairman Outlines Responsibilities

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s (FERC) newly appointed Chairman, Jon Wellinghoff, announced his priorities for the agency last week. Wellinghoff said FERC will maintain its basic responsibilities including: 1) developing needed infrastructure, 2) fostering competitive markets that produce just and reasonable rates, 3) overseeing reliability standards, and 4) enforcing both market and reliability rules. Wellinghoff noted that, “Issues surrounding climate change, renewable resources, energy efficiency, and developing a smart grid are emerging as drivers for energy policy. He also announced the creation of the Office of Energy Policy and Innovation, which will be headed by Jamie Simler, the deputy director of the Commission’s Office of Energy Market Regulation. The office begins operations on May 4.


FPU Merger

Florida Public Utilities (FPU) and Chesapeake Utilities announced last Monday that they have entered into a definitive merger in which FPU will become a wholly owned subsidiary of Chesapeake Utilities. FPU will initially operate as a separate business unit but, subject to regulatory approval, would eventually integrate its operations with Chesapeake’s Central Florida Gas division. The combined company would serve 34 counties throughout Florida.



FMPA Weekly is published by FMPA for employees and goveing boards of FMPA member utilities. Questions or comments about this newsletter may be directed to Diane Nelson or Beth Pangbo in FMPA’s Public Relations Department.


Want more background on the names and terms used in this newsletter? Check out FMPA’s new Glossary, which features some of the most frequently mentioned committees, companies, places and terms, or contact the person named in each FMPA story to lea more. (Click here for the Staff Directory).


Have a question, comment or story idea for the newsletter? FMPA welcomes your feedback at any time. Contact Diane Nelson.