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The latest happenings in your city government.


The Lakeland City Commission voted to increase the fuel charge for Lakeland Electric customers 50 cents per 1,000 kWh effective for meters read on or after October 1, 2012.  The new fuel charge will be $42.80 per 1,000 kWh. 

After listening to a presentation at September 17, 2012 Utility Committee meeting, staff recommended an increase to the current fuel charge based on the slight increases for natural gas in both the New York Mercantile Exchange and the Henry Hub Spot Market.  Forecasters have implied that some wells have come off line, causing the natural gas market to increase slightly.

The Utility Committee also voted unanimously to reduce the environmental compliance charge from $2.456 per 1,000 kWh to $2.348 per 1,000 kWh. This vote was also passed by the City Commission during the September 17, 2012 meeting.  The environmental charge is calculated in the base charge below.

RESIDENTIAL RATES BASED ON 1,000 kWh

                         Current            New Rates – Effective October 1, 2012

Base Charge     $  59.42           $  59.31 (includes environmental decrease)

Fuel Charge      $  42.30           $  42.80 (includes fuel increase)

TOTAL:             $101.72            $102.11

Environmental compliance charges are directly related to federal and state initiatives regarding clean air and water mandates. Most of the expenses are related to energy production and include air emission controls, water quality monitoring and capital spending for equipment necessary to comply with the Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Air Act. 

Lakeland Electric bills are broken out for customer convenience in detail to show the base charge, fuel charge and appropriate taxes and service charges.  The fuel charge on a utility bill is exactly that, the actual costs for fuel used to generate the amount of electricity used within your residence.  Most utilities subscribe to the same billing practice and break out the base rate and the fuel charge for their customers. There is no mark-up in fuel.  In fact, fuel is a straight pass-through to customers. 

Based on Florida Municipal Electric Association data, Lakeland Electric’s residential rates after the October 1st fuel charge increase will be the third lowest in the state for residential customers as well as the third lowest in Florida for all of the commercial rate classes.

Visit www.lakelandelectric.com for more information and to see a residential rate comparison.

 


EDGEWOOD EXTENSION OPENS SEPTEMBER 21ST

EAST/WEST CONNECTOR

LAKELAND, FL (September 13, 2012) – The much anticipated Edgewood Extension that connects South Florida Avenue to Harden Boulevard will officially open on Friday, September 21, 2012 during a 9 a.m. ceremony that will take place at the intersection of Lincoln Avenue and the Edgewood Extension.

The public is invited to help celebrate the new roadway with a motorcade ribbon cutting after the official removal of the barricades.  Those wishing to participate are invited to enter the Edgewood Extension roadway at Harden Boulevard and travel east toward Lincoln Avenue.  There will be traffic attendants to guide participants to the right place.  The ribbon breaking motorcade will include vehicles from the Lakeland Police Department, Lakeland Fire Department, Lakeland Electric, Lakeland Water/Waste Water, Solid Waste, the Citrus Connection and those who would like to be part of the festivities.

Mayor Gow Fields said, “We have been exploring options for an east/west connector for a long time and we are very glad to have this important transportation project completed.” He added, “The new road will relieve congestion, ultimately improving transportation service including quicker police/fire/EMS response times.”

The Southwest Middle School Jazz Band will play as the motorcade heads toward South Florida Avenue and students from Southwest Middle School will cheer, officially opening the road for vehicle traffic.  The eastbound lane will open first with road workers removing all barricades in that direction followed by removal of the barricades in the west bound lanes.

The Edgewood Extension roadway project started January 1, 2012 and it will open ahead of schedule.  An east/west connector has been in the works since 2001 when the City of Lakeland had its first initial workshop on possible routes.  The total cost for the project was $19.2 million with funding coming from Polk County, the Federal Highway Administration, City of Lakeland impact fees and City of Lakeland bond revenues. The Edgewood Extension is expected to experience over 16,000 cars per day. 

-END-



WIGGS ANNOUNCES CANDIDACY FOR CITY OF LAKELAND MAYOR

 

LAKELAND, FL (September 12, 2012) – Current Lakeland City Commissioner Howard Wiggs recently announced that he will be running for Mayor of Lakeland in 2013.  Wiggs commented, “I thought seriously about retiring from the Commission.  However, I realized that I’m still very enthusiastic about helping solve the problems of our citizens and I want to continue to serve this community.”  He added, “In addition, we need to support a business environment that fosters the creation of quality jobs and we need to continue strengthening Lakeland Electric, one of our best community assets.  Under my leadership, I promise to focus on both of those vital business areas.”

 Wiggs was first elected in 1992.  He serves on the Board of the Florida League of Cities, has chaired both the state Advocacy Committee and the Florida Action Strike Team which travel to Washington DC to support Florida cities.  He is also on the Board of the Ridge League of Cities and is past president.

Wiggs received the Leadership Lakeland Jere Annis Award that recognizes leaders that are consistent in creating community understanding and enhancing the quality of life in the Lakeland area.  He is also a distinguished alumnus of Polk State College and he currently serves on the Florida Southern College Board of Trustees.  Wiggs is past chair of Lakeland Vision and serves on their board.  He is past president of Leadership Lakeland, the Florida Southern College Alumni Association and past chair of Polk Senior Games. 

He is a member of the Mulberry High School Hall of Fame, a proud Rotarian, a lifetime member of the NAACP, a 32nd Degree Mason and a member of the First United Methodist Church of Lakeland.  Wiggs is president of Bagley Idea Pros and manages family real estate properties.  He is married to Linda Bagley Wiggs and has four children: Johnny, Chris, Braxton and Kimber.



The Florida Regional Planning Councils in association with the U.S. Economic Development Administration, U.S. Department of Energy, and the Florida Office of Energy are identifying potential strategies to diversify Florida's energy future and reduce reliance on foreign energy sources. As part of this effort, Florida’s Regional Planning Councils have developed a survey regarding electricity, gasoline usage, and renewable energy resources. Please complete the survey by visiting the Florida-Energy website (http://florida-energy.org/) to help decision-makers create options for Floridians with respect to state energy planning and energy security issues. Please complete the survey by September 30, 2012.