Florida Municipal Power Agency General Manager and CEO Jacob Williams issued a statement regarding preparations for Hurricane Irma.
“FMPA and its operating partners have been busy preparing its power plant sites in Key West, Fort Pierce, Kissimmee, Orlando and Port St. Lucie for Hurricane Irma. The plants are as ready as they can be, and we have put contingency plans in place should some of the generating units be impacted by the storm. We are doing all that we can to make sure we can generate power for our member cities during and after the storm.
Everyone on the Virgin Islands, and most electricity customers in Puerto Rico, appeared to be in the dark on Thursday, Sept. 7 after Hurricane Irma passed through the islands. As damage assessments began on those islands, people and power companies in Florida and other areas of the East Coast watched the Category 5 hurricane apprehensively as it moved closer to the U.S. mainland.
Mutual aid crews have been gathering this week from far-flung states, setting up camp in strategic staging areas. In many cases, electric utilities — whether from the private, public power, or rural cooperative sector — held off on where to deploy the crews, however, until more is known about exactly where help will be needed.
“Florida’s municipal electric utilities have been preparing for Hurricane Irma. We have been in touch with mutual aid partners across the country and are lining up resources to immediately assist affected Florida communities with power restoration.
We have also been in close communication with Gov. Rick Scott, who we commend for his assistance in helping us prepare and his tremendous leadership during this time of uncertainty.
Governor Rick Scott issued Executive Order 17-235 declaring a state of emergency in all 67 counties within the State of Florida in response to Hurricane Irma – a major Category 4 storm approaching Florida. By declaring a state of emergency in all 67 Florida counties, Governor Scott is ensuring that local governments have ample time, resources and flexibility to get prepared for this dangerous storm and are not hindered, delayed or prevented from taking all necessary actions to keep communities safe.
Duke Energy Florida on Tuesday began seeking approval of a wide-ranging settlement agreement that would eliminate the possibility of building nuclear reactors in Levy County, boost solar-energy projects and help set base electricity rates for the coming years.
The settlement, filed at the Florida Public Service Commission, was reached with the state Office of Public Counsel, which represents consumers, and business and renewable-energy groups. If approved, it would resolve major issues for the state’s second-largest utility — and put to rest the long-controversial nuclear project.
Customers of Tampa Electric likely will see 1 to 2 percent increases in their monthly electric bills in 2018, the company said after making annual filings last week at the Florida Public Service Commission.
The filings deal with issues such as fuel costs, which are adjusted each year. The Public Service Commission will consider the costs during a hearing that starts Oct. 25.
FMEA’s Bill Comparison for July 2017 shows the average bills of public power utilities across Florida are $11.33 less than the average bills for investor-owned utilities per 1,000 kWh.
Overall, out of fifteen ranked categories; City of Mount Dora reports the lowest bill in six categories, Lakeland Electric reports the lowest bills in five categories, and the City of Tallahassee reports the lowest bills in two categories. The City of Moore Haven and the Utilities Commission of New Smyrna Beach report being the lowest in one category each.