A weekly e-newsletter for FMPA members
Jan. 3, 2017
Indian River Gas Transportation
FMPA began self-supplying natural gas transportation capacity in December for its share of the Indian River combustion turbine units. This decision is expected to save approximately $1 million annually for the All-Requirements Project. The four peaking units at the Indian River Plant in Brevard County are jointly owned with and operated by Orlando Utilities Commission. This change resulted from FMPA’s focus on cost-reduction. Contact: Joe McKinney
APPA Policy Makers Council
Two elected officials from Florida’s municipal utilities have been named to the Policy Makers Council (PMC) at the American Public Power Association (APPA). Peter Batty, chair of the Utility Board of the City of Key West, and Councilman Jim Hilty of Ocala were selected in December to serve on the 2017 PMC. They join Reginald Hardee, chairman of the Kissimmee Utility Authority’s Board of Directors, as members of the council from Florida. Peter will serve a three-year term as a regional representative, and Jim will serve a one-year term as an at-large member. Rotating off the council after serving the maximum term is Mayor Bill Conrad of Newberry. The PMC meets at least twice a year in Washington, D.C. PMC members meet with members of Congress to advocate on behalf of public power. Contact: Mark McCain
FMPA’s Audited Financial Statements for the fiscal year ending Sept. 30, 2016, were emailed Dec. 22 to FMPA’s Board of Directors, Executive Committee and Audit and Risk Oversight Committee. A conference call will be scheduled the week of Jan. 9 to discuss the financials. The purpose of this annual telephonic meeting is to provide a summary report on the financials and allow members to ask questions. Contact: Rick Minch
Vero Beach Meeting
Jacob Williams travelled to Vero Beach last Tuesday to meet with Mayor and FMPA Board member Laura Moss.
All-Requirements Project December Load Statistics
The All-Requirements Project’s non-Contract Rate of Delivery peak for December was 824 MW, which occurred Dec. 19 between 2 p.m. and 3 p.m. The project’s load factor for December was 69%. Load factor is a ratio of actual energy (MWh) used during the period versus what would have been consumed if demand was at peak for the entire period. A higher load factor indicates more effective system utilization and results in lower average costs. The month’s peak was 104% of the budgeted peak, and energy was 97% of the budget. A graph showing the All-Requirements Project hourly load for December is available on the Portal. Contact: Jim Arntz
Vero Beach City Council Meeting
Jacob Williams and Jody Finklea travel to Vero Beach on Tuesday to give a presentation at the Vero Beach City Council meeting. The presentation topics include: 1) an overview of FMPA and its power projects, 2) FMPA’s role in providing power to Vero Beach, and 3) a discussion of both Vero Beach’s proposed sale of Indian River Shores customers and steps required for a full sale of the city’s electric utility. The City Council meeting begins at 9:30 a.m. and is broadcast live on the internet through the city’s website. Contact: Jacob Williams
Welcome, Linda Howard
FMPA welcomes Linda Howard to the Agency’s staff on Tuesday to serve as Treasurer. Linda comes to FMPA from the Southwest Florida Water Management District, and before that, she spent 25 years with Orlando Utilities Commission, including serving as its treasurer. Linda has a bachelor’s degree in accounting from the University of Central Florida (UCF) and a master’s degree in business administration from UCF. She replaces Janet Davis, who retired last September after 17 years with FMPA. Contact: Mark Larson
Municipal Utility Visits
Jacob Williams travels to Jacksonville and Jacksonville Beach on Wednesday. He will meet with Paul McElroy, JEA’s Managing Director and CEO, and then visit Jacksonville Beach to meet with City Manager George Forbes and Allen Putnam, the Managing Director at Beaches Energy Services.
Excellence as a Supervisor
Module three of Series II of FMPA’s Excellence as a Supervisor series will be held Wednesday and Thursday in the Board room at FMPA’s Orlando office. The Excellence as a Supervisor Certificate Program is customized for municipal utilities. This training has been designed for first-line supervisors, middle-level supervisors and prospective supervisors. Series II provides information on selection and development of employees, performance evaluations, employee motivation, leading change, as well as an overview of ensuring a harassment-free and respectful workplace. Contact: Sharon Smeenk
APPA Legislative Rally
Mark McCain and Ryan Dumas meet Thursday via conference call with Amy Zubaly from the Florida Municipal Electric Association and FMPA’s lobbyist Michael Nolan to begin planning for the 2017 Legislative Rally in Washington, D.C. The Rally, hosted by the American Public Power Association (APPA), will be held Feb. 27 to March 1. Anyone who plans to attend the Rally should make their travel plans and register with APPA as soon as possible. Contact: Mark McCain
All-Requirements Project Weekly Load Statistics
The weekly update of the All-Requirements Project historical load graph has been posted on the Portal. The graph is updated through Jan. 2. Contact: Jim Arntz
Congratulations to Jane Soto, who celebrates two years with FMPA on Saturday, Jan. 7.
ARP Telephonic Rate Workshop
The ARP Executive Committee meets Jan. 9 at 2 p.m. via conference call for the monthly All-Requirements Project Rate Workshop. Contact: Jim Arntz
ARP Ratemaking Review Workshop
The Executive Committee will hold a workshop Jan. 18 at 10 a.m. in the Board room of FMPA’s Orlando office to discuss the All-Requirements Project’s demand- and energy-rate structure. Contact: Jacob Williams
Policy Makers Liaisons Committee
The Policy Makers Liaisons Committee will meet Jan. 18 at 1 p.m., or immediately following the Executive Committee’s workshop. Lunch will be served around noon. Committee members are invited to attend the rate workshop that begins at 10 a.m. Contact: Mark McCain
The Audit and Risk Oversight Committee (AROC), Board of Directors and ARP Executive Committee will meet Jan. 19 at FMPA’s Orlando office. The AROC will meet at 8:30 a.m., followed by the Board of Directors at 9:30 a.m. and the Executive Committee at 10 a.m. Contact: Jacob Williams
Distribution Services and Lineworker Staffing Roundtable
There’s still time to register for a roundtable meeting on distribution services and lineworker staffing hosted by FMPA and the Florida Municipal Electric Association. The roundtable will be held Jan. 25 at 10 a.m. in FMPA’s Orlando office. Utilities dealing with operating and staffing issues—and utilities that have dealt with these issues—are encouraged to attend the roundtable to share ideas and explore ways municipal utilities might work together to address these important challenges that impact a vital part of operating an electric system. Attendance is free and lunch will be provided. Contact: Sharon Smeenk
Vermont Utility Finds Computer Malware Attributed to Russian Hackers
The Burlington, Vt., Electric Department (BED) said last Friday that it detected malware on one of its laptops that the U.S. govement has linked to Russian hackers. BED said the discovery came after utilities nationwide were alerted last Thursday to the potential threat. “We detected the malware in a single Burlington Electric Department laptop not connected to our organization’s grid system, the utility said. “There is no indication of compromise to customer information or to the security of our system. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) issued an analysis last Thursday stating that Russian civilian and military intelligence operatives are linked to computer hacking associated with the U.S. elections, as well as cyber assaults on a range of govement, political and private sector entities. The U.S. govement is referring to this malicious cyber activity as Grizzly Steppe. These cyber operations have included targeted email phishing campaigns, called spear phishing, known for closely mimicking the domains of identified organizations. The emails try to trick victims into clicking links or opening attachments that install malware. Once hackers gain access in this way to the target network, the infiltrators establish control capabilities and harvest information. DHS provided specific recommendations for likely targets, including electric utilities, to review their computer systems for malicious activity. If activity is found, organizations were asked to contact DHS or the FBI. DHS also recommended specified mitigation strategies to limit cyber-attacks and offered resources to recognize and address cybersecurity risks.
Judge Invalidates Florida DEP’s Pollution Notification Rule
Florida’s new Pollution Notification Rule was invalidated last Friday by an administrative law judge who ruled that the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) overstepped its authority in proposing new requirements for notifying the public when pollution occurs. The department proposed the notification requirements at the direction of Gov. Rick Scott following high-profile pollution incidents involving a sinkhole at a phosphate plant in Polk County and sewage discharges into Tampa Bay. Judge Bram D.E. Canter issued a 21-page order siding with business groups that challenged the rule saying that the department does not have authority under state law to impose the notification requirements. In part, the arguments dealt with proposed requirements for notifying local govement officials and the media when pollution occurs. “There is no statute that specifically authorizes DEP to adopt a rule which requires persons to notify entities other than DEP when there is a release of a contaminant, Canter wrote. The issue of public notification of pollution incidents could re-emerge during the 2017 Florida Legislative Session, which starts in March. Sen. Bill Galvano, R-Bradenton, and Rep. Kathleen Peters, R-Treasure Island, indicated in September that they would propose legislation to address the issue.
FPL Asks Supreme Court to Hear Turkey Point Case
Florida Power & Light (FPL) filed a brief last Wednesday with the Florida Supreme Court asking the high court to review a lower-court decision disallowing the construction of two new nuclear reactors at FPL’s Turkey Point Nuclear Generation Station near Homestead. Florida Gov. Rick Scott and his Cabinet, siting as the Power Plant Siting Board, had approved a plan to build the reactors, but that decision was challenged by local Miami govements and later overtued by the Third District Court of Appeal. A key part of the appeals court’s ruling said Scott and Cabinet members erroneously determined they could not require underground transmission lines as a condition of the project approval. But in FPL’s initial brief, attoeys for the utility targeted that part of the appeals court’s ruling stating the Public Service Commission—not Scott and the Cabinet—has authority over issues related to installing transmission lines underground. FPL’s initial brief is a first step in asking the Supreme Court to take up the case. It could be weeks or months before justices decide whether to hear the dispute.
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 Jeff Grainger in FMPA’s Public Relations Department.
Want more background on the names and terms used in this newsletter? Check out FMPA’s 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.
Have a question, comment or story idea for the newsletter? FMPA welcomes your feedback at any time. Contact: Jeff Grainger
Florida Municipal Power Agency
8553 Commodity Circle
Orlando, FL 32819-9002
Tel 407 355-7767
Fax 407 355-5794
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