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The latest happenings in your city government.


Governor Rick Scott Recognizes The Lakeland Center’s Perfect Safety & Sanitation Score for Third Consecutive Year

April 24, 2014 (Lakeland, FL) – The Lakeland Center is one of only 51 food service establishments in the Sunshine State that did not receive any violations by the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation within the past year. This is the third consecutive year Ovations Food Services at The Lakeland Center received a perfect score, taking over the facility’s food and beverage operations in late 2009. Ovations Food Services is a nationally recognized food and beverage service provider to over 140 public assembly facilities across North America and a subsidiary of the sports and entertainment firm Comcast-Spectacor.

“I applaud you and your employees for demonstrating such a high level of attention to detail and commitment to excellence,” Rick Scott, Florida’s Governor stated in his letter to The Lakeland Center. “Thanks to you, Florida’s opportunity economy is growing.”

“Ovations did it again,” explained Mike LaPan, Executive Director at The Lakeland Center. “Their team does excellent work, bringing top-notch service and experiences to our guests.”

About Ovations Food Services, LP:  
A nationally ranked food service company, Ovations Food Services (www.ovationsfoodservices.com) delivers fresh menus, fresh management and fresh ideas to public assembly venues, hotels and casinos throughout the United States and Canada.  Ovations specializes in food, beverage, merchandise and hospitality services for stadiums, arenas, convention centers, fairgrounds, expo-centers, racetracks, zoos, performing arts centers, amphitheaters, casinos and hotels. Considered by many as the best managed and most innovative company in the industry, Ovations’ results oriented senior management team has been involved in managing almost every major public assembly facility throughout the United States and Canada.  

About Comcast Spectacor: Ovations’ parent company, Comcast-Spectacor® (comcast-spectacor.com) is the Philadelphia-based sports and entertainment company which owns the Philadelphia Flyers (NHL), the home arena for both the Flyers and the NBA’s Philadelphia 76ers, the Wells Fargo Center, and four Flyers Skate Zone community ice skating and hockey rinks. In addition, Comcast-Spectacor is also the principal owner of Global Spectrum, the fastest growing firm in the public assembly management field with more than 115 facilities throughout the United States and Canada; Ovations Food Services, a food and beverage service provider; New Era Tickets, a ticketing and marketing company for public assembly facilities; Front Row Marketing Services, a commercial rights sales company; FanOne, a digital fan marketing company; and Paciolan, the leading provider of venue enablement, ticketing, fundraising and marketing technology solutions.


Contact: Kristen Thompson, Ovations’ Director of Marketing pr@ovationsfs.com or (813)909-2178 x 123


Lakeland Awarded Bronze-Level Walk Friendly Communities Designation

Lakeland, FL – The Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center has designated the City of Lakeland a Bronze-Level Walk Friendly Community for its walkability initiatives and programs. Sponsored by the U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration and FedEx, Walk Friendly Communities is a national recognition program aimed at recognizing communities for their commitment to pedestrian safety.

For a medium sized city in central Florida, Lakeland offers many opportunities for people to walk safely and conveniently with more than 260 miles of sidewalks and 26 miles of off-road trails, within the metro area.  These sidewalks and trails connect downtown Lakeland with the surrounding neighborhoods, parks and scenic lakes making walking a pleasant experience.  

Among the top reasons cited by the Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center for the designation are:

·       A well-connected network of parks and trails, with future trails planned.

·       Good planning policies to promote infill development and Complete Streets.

·       Collaboration among city departments and with other agencies, such as Polk County Board of County Commissioners and the Florida Department of Transportation, to improve pedestrian safety.

This designation acknowledges the sustained efforts that the city is engaged in to build a healthy and active community for all Lakelanders to enjoy” comments the City of Lakeland Community Development Director, Jim Studiale. 

Lakeland is among four communities recognized in the latest round of Walk Friendly Communities announced. The Walk Friendly Community designation, awarded from bronze to platinum, is given to applicant communities that have demonstrated a commitment to improving and sustaining walkability and pedestrian safety through comprehensive programs, plans and policies. To date, 47 communities in the U.S. have been designated as Walk Friendly Communities.

For more information on Walk Friendly Communities, please visit http://www.walkfriendly.org.

Additional Resources:

Walk Friendly Communities Website

http://www.walkfriendly.org

 

Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center Website

http://www.pedbikeinfo.org

 

Federal Highway Administration Website

http://safety.fhwa.dot.gov/ped_bike/


 

CITY CHALLENGE URBAN MOUNTAIN BIKE RACE

DOWNTOWN LAKELAND

 

LAKELAND, FL (April 15, 2014) -  Red Trail Racing of Lakeland will host the City Challenge Urban Mountain Bike Race in downtown Lakeland on Saturday, April 19, 2014 from 5 p.m. – 10 p.m.  The registration and head table for the event will be in front of City Hall on Lemon Street.  Registration for the event will start at 5 p.m. with a practice session starting at 6 p.m. before the racing starts around 6:30 p.m.

 

Ray Wells, promoter of the event said, “I’m excited and we have almost 150 racers that will be participating in this very unique urban mountain bike format.  In fact, I am not aware of any other urban mountain bike race in the nation and we started it all right here in Lakeland.” 

 

The urban criterium is a mountain bike race on asphalt and stairs that winds through the Iowa Street Parking garage and along Lemon Street in front of City Hall.  Spectators are admitted free and can view the outlined course along Iowa Street and the Iowa Street Garage from designated positions.  

 

The Iowa Avenue Parking Garage will be closed because it is part of the race course. The portion of Iowa Avenue between Lakeland’s City Hall and Lakeland Electric will be closed and a portion of Lemon Street will be closed for through traffic at Massachusetts Avenue.

 

Wells said, “This year we’ve added a cyclocross event where participants race their bike on the course backwards having to carry their bikes up the many stairs in the course instead of riding down them.”  

 

Visit www.redtrailracing.com for more information and to register for the Lakeland Urban Mountain Bike Race .

 

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LAKELAND ELECTRIC FUEL CHARGE INCREASE EFFECTIVE MAY 2014  

 

LAKELAND, FL (April 7, 2014) - The Lakeland City Commission voted to increase the fuel charge for Lakeland Electric customers $2.50 cents per 1,000 kWh effective for meters read on or after May 1, 2014.  The new fuel charge will be $43.35 per 1,000 kWh. 

 

After listening to a presentation at the Monday, April 7th Utility Committee meeting, staff recommended an increase to the current fuel charge based on fuel forecasts that indicates growing natural gas prices for the upcoming year. 

 

 

RESIDENTIAL RATES BASED ON 1,000 kWh

 

Current                        New Rates – Effective May 1, 2014

Base Charge    $  59.64                       $  59.64 (includes environmental charges)

Fuel Charge     $  40.85                       $  43.35 (includes fuel increase)

TOTAL:             $100.49                       $102.99

 

The base rate includes environmental compliance charges that 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 charge to customers. 

 

Based on Florida Municipal Electric Association data, Lakeland Electric’s residential rates after the May 1, 2014 fuel charge increase will be the continue to be the lowest in the state. Visit www.lakelandelectric.com for more information and to see a residential rate comparison.

 

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