A weekly e-newsletter for FMPA members
July 29, 2019
Results from FMPA’s annual salary survey of municipal electric utilities were posted to the Portal last week. The survey was created to provide Florida-specific salary and benefit information to help members compare benefits and analyze employee retention. All FMPA members were invited to participate, and 18 responses were received. Contact: Sharon Adams
An exit conference was held last week with FMPA’s independent auditors, Purvis, Gray and Company to discuss FMPA’s accounting procedures and to review preliminary findings of the interim audit. The auditors will discuss interim audit results with the Finance Committee as part of the year-end audit. Contact: Jason Wolfe
FMPA Social Media
FMPA reached 1,000 likes and followers on its Facebook page last Monday. Thank you for helping us reach our goal. Following FMPA on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn is the best way to stay up-to-date on all FMPA news and events. Contact: Mark McCain
Member City Visits
Mike McCleary and Cairo Vanegas visit Kissimmee on Monday. Mike and Mark McCain visit Green Cove Springs on Tuesday.
Preventing Ransomware Webinar
The Florida Local Government Information Systems Association (FLGISA) is offering a series of webinars led by technology and security experts to develop strategies for strengthening networks and controls. The first and second webinars can be viewed on YouTube. Register via GoToWebinar to participate in the third webinar scheduled for Tuesday, July 30 at 10 a.m.
Solar Phase II Meeting
FMPA meets with Origis Energy on Thursday at FMPA’s Orlando office to discuss power purchase agreement terms for Solar Project Phase II. Contact: Susan Schumann
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 July 28. Contact: Jason Wolfe
Happy anniversary to Mike McCleary, who celebrates two years with FMPA on Wednesday, July 31.
Systems Control Roundtable
FMPA hosts a Systems Control Roundtable at Gainesville Regional Utilities on Aug. 15 at 10 a.m. The roundtable provides a forum for control center operators to discuss common issues, share best practices and provide support to fellow member utilities. The event is open to system control personnel who are involved with daily system switching, trouble call dispatch and facilitate crew locations and field activities. Registration is free and closes Aug. 12. Lunch will be provided. Contact: Sharon Samuels
FMPA hosts a training class for Substation Inspection & Testing on Aug. 20-21 in Orlando. Session topics include: 1) substation inspections, 2) electrical equipment testing, 3) battery testing, maintenance and troubleshooting, 4) SF6 gas testing, and 5) mobile substation. Registration is $900 per person and closes Aug. 6. Contact: Sharon Samuels
FMPA members are eligible to participate in a one-year Meterman Certification Program from Electric Cities of Georgia (ECG). The program, available through the FMPA-ECG Alliance, features topics on safe metering work practices, metering terminology and an in-depth look at single-phase and poly-phase meters. There are two, three-day classes held Aug. 20-22, 2019, and April 14-16, 2020. Each session includes hands-on and classroom instruction. Registration and more information is available. Contact: Mike McCleary
Florida Energy and Climate Summit
The Florida Energy and Climate Summit is Sept. 4-6 at the Grand Hyatt in Tampa. Attendees will be able to share ideas on diversifying the state’s energy source, promoting energy efficiency and adapting to climate change. Registration is $250 per person, and the agenda is available.
Meter Tech Roundtable
FMPA’s Meter Tech Roundtable is scheduled for Nov. 6. The roundtable provides a forum for participants to discuss metering topics such as policies, procedures, equipment, AMI, technology, safety, training, apprentice programs and more. Registration and more information will be provided soon. Contact: Sharon Samuels
Public Power Cybersecurity Summit and Scorecard
The American Public Power Association (APPA) will host a Cybersecurity Summit Nov. 18-20 in Nashville. In addition to participating in the summit, members are encouraged to complete the Public Power Cybersecurity Scorecard, an online self-assessment tool to assess security levels for protection from a cyber risk. FMPA encourages its members to fill out the scorecard, and Agency staff members are available to help members complete it. Contact: Carol Chinn
Florida’s population is expected to grow by more than 300,000 people per year through 2024, according to a report released last Thursday by state economists. The Demographic Estimating Conference’s updated population forecast concluded, “Between April 1, 2018, and April 1, 2024, population growth is expected to average 330,605 net new residents per year (906 per day), representing a compound growth rate of 1.53% over this six-year time horizon. These increases are analogous to adding a city slightly larger than Orlando every year.” The report estimated the population on April 1, 2018, at 20.84 million with it increasing to 21.2 million on April 1, 2019. Florida residents are forecast to hit 22.8 million by April 1, 2024. The increases will primarily stem from “net migration” as people move into the state, rather than births, which are largely offset by deaths.
JEA’s board of directors voted last Tuesday to consider privatizing the city-owned electric and water utility in Jacksonville. JEA Chief Executive Officer Aaron Zahn has spent months setting the stage for this decision as he campaigned to convince the public that JEA needed to embrace fundamental changes to avoid mass layoffs and future financial ruin. Zahn and his senior leadership team told board members they had two choices: immediately terminate 574 of the utility’s 2,000 workers or allow JEA to find a path to the private sector. Board members embraced Zahn’s belief that JEA must find new ways to make money in order to survive the threat that solar power technology and heightened energy efficiency standards pose to the utility industry’s business model, as well as his assertion that it would be all but impossible to do so under the constraints of government ownership. With the board’s unanimous blessing, JEA can now begin a competitive selection process to accept bids from outside suitors, likely restarting a political debate from 2017 when Mayor Lenny Curry began discussing privatization. JEA has not set a timeline for the bid process. Any final decision would need to be approved by the JEA board, the Jacksonville City Council and Curry. A privatization deal also could be subject to a special election, as the city’s charter requires voters to approve the sale of 10% or more of JEA’s assets. Just two days after the JEA board decided to explore privatization, the utility announced last Thursday that it had hired four firms to provide financial and legal advice while inviting offers for the utility. JEA did not respond to media questions about when it initiated the process for hiring the firms.
Tampa Electric’s Power Plant Project Receives Final State Approval
Tampa Electric Company’s (TECO) proposed power-plant project in Hillsborough County received final approval last Thursday from the state. Florida Gov. DeSantis and state Cabinet, sitting as the power plant Siting Board, approved the project by a 3-1 vote. TECO will make changes to generating units at its Big Bend Power Station. The $853 million project will shut down one coal-fired unit and upgrade another coal unit to natural-gas fueled by 2023.
Gov. Ron DeSantis announced plans last Wednesday to add electric vehicle (EV) charging stations to each of Florida’s turnpike service plazas by the end of 2019. Charging stations have already been installed at the Turkey Lake service plaza in Orange County and the Fort Drum service plaza in Okeechobee County. The state intends to use approximately $25 million from its Volkswagen settlement with U.S. Department of Justice. There are additional plans to install charging stations along other major Florida highways in the future.
FMPA Weekly is published by FMPA for employees and governing boards of FMPA member utilities. Questions or comments about this newsletter may be directed to Melisa Inanc or Kenasia Lealie 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 learn more.
Florida Municipal Power Agency
8553 Commodity Circle
Orlando, FL 32819-9002
Tel 407 355-7767
Fax 407 355-5794
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