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LAKELAND LINDER REGIONAL AIRPORT’S TOWER ON LIST TO BE PHASED OUT

LAKELAND LINDER REGIONAL AIRPORT’S TOWER ON LIST TO BE PHASED OUT

LAKELAND, FL (March 22, 2013) -- Lakeland Linder Regional Airport is on the list of 149 federal contract air traffic control towers that are scheduled to have federal funding phased out starting April 7, 2013 as part of the federal budget sequestration. Gene Conrad, Director of Lakeland Linder Regional Airport said, “We are very disappointed in the FAA’s decision to discontinue funding for the Lakeland Linder Regional Airport federal contract tower.  Safety is paramount and our operations continue to increase.  We are exploring options to maintain air traffic control services at Lakeland Airport.” 

 

“We did receive confirmation today that the FAA will be sending a full contingent of air traffic controllers to Lakeland Linder Regional Airport to operate the air traffic control tower during the annual Sun ‘n Fun International Fly-In and Expo April 9 – 14th,” said Conrad.   “This is a reimbursable agreement with the FAA and the Sun ‘n Fun Board unanimously agreed to stand behind the financial commitment.  We are currently working with our state and local stakeholders to help cover those costs.”

 

In March, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) proposed to close 189 contract air traffic control towers as part of its plan to meet the $637 million in cuts required under budget sequestration and announced that it would consider keeping open any of these towers if doing so would be in the national interest.  

The national interest considerations included:

·         Significant threats to national security as determined by the FAA in consultation with the Department of Defense or the Department of Homeland Security;

·         Significant, adverse economic impact that is beyond the impact on a local community;

·         Significant impact on multi-state transportation, communication or banking/financial networks;

·         The extent to which an airport currently served by a contract tower is a critical diversionary airport to a large hub.  

The Federal Department of Transportation consulted with the Department of Defense, the Department of Homeland Security, and conducted operational assessments of each potential tower closure on the national air transportation system. As a result, 24 federal contract towers will remain open because closing them would have a negative impact on the national interest.  The FAA will begin a four-week phased out budget process that will affect 149 federal contract towers beginning on April 7th and Lakeland Linder Regional Airport is on that list. 

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FAA Contract Tower Closure List

FAA Contract Towers Remaining Open

FAA Contract Tower Cost Share Sites Remaining Open



CITY OF LAKELAND TO HOST INDOOR TRIATHLON

CITY OF LAKELAND TO HOST INDOOR TRIATHLON

Make the City of Lakeland Parks & Recreation Indoor Triathlon your first indoor triathlon. This fun challenge is perfect for everyone – from seasoned triathletes to first-timers. Race a 20-minute swim, 20-minute bike and a 20-minute run in the controlled environment of the Kelly Recreation and Gandy Pool Complexes.  The Indoor Triathlon will be held on Saturday, April 13th, with check-in at 8:00 am at the Kelly Recreation Complex. 

You set your own pace. Performance is measured by distance covered in each of the three legs. The more distance you cover, the higher your score.

All participants will receive a City of Lakeland Indoor Triathlon T-shirt and a medal. All ages are welcome, but minors must have parental consent at time of registration. Deadline for registration is April 6, 2013. Entry fee is only $20.00 Full details and registration forms can be found at  www.lakelandgov.net. For more information contact the Kelly Recreation Complex at 863-834-3283.

Lakeland Electric Fuel Decrease Effective April 2013

The Lakeland City Commission unanimously voted to decrease the fuel charge for Lakeland Electric customers 90 cents per 1,000 kWh effective for meters read on or after April 1, 2013.  The new fuel charge will be $41.35 per 1,000 kWh. 

After listening to a presentation at the Monday, March 18, 2013 Utility Committee meeting, staff recommended a decrease to the current fuel charge based on fuel forecasts for the upcoming year.  Although there is little change in the natural gas market, there has been an 8.4% reduction in coal costs that results in a lower total fuel forecast.

RESIDENTIAL RATES BASED ON 1,000 kWh

Current                                   New Rates – Effective April 1, 2013

Base Charge   $  59.31                                   $  59.31 (includes environmental charges)

Fuel Charge    $  42.25                                   $  41.35 (includes fuel increase)

TOTAL:            $101.56                                  $100.66

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 April 1, 2013 fuel charge decrease will be the second lowest in the state and the lowest in Florida for large commercial users. Visit www.lakelandelectric.com for more information and to see a residential rate comparison.


FMEA Rates Lakeland Electric Rates as One of the Lowest in the State

FMEA’s Bill Comparison for January 2013 Is now available. The report compares utility bills for residential, commercial and industrial utility customers categorized by consumption in 15 categories. The report is produced monthly and includes billing information from investor-owned and municipal utilities.

Of the 15 categories, Lakeland Electric and Florida Power & Light Co. (FPL) are tied for lowest bills in six categories each. The City of Tallahassee ranked lowest in two categories, while the Utilities Commission of New Smyrna Beach was lowest in one.

For residential bills, FPL is lowest in two of three categories.

In the commercial sector, the report shows Lakeland Electric is lowest in three categories, Tallahassee and FPL are lowest in two, and the Utilities Commission of New Smyrna Beach is lowest in one.

In the industrial sector, Lakeland Electric and FPL are tied as lowest in two categories each.

The FMEA Bill comparison provides a fair comparison of customer bills served by different utilities. The report includes utility rates, average franchise fees of 6 percent, local payments in lieu of taxes, and gross receipts taxes.