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The latest happenings in your city government.


LAKELAND, FL (March 12, 2013) – The March 22, 2013 Music Series will feature two local music trios as part of a music showcase that will take place in downtown Lakeland’s historic Munn Park.  This FREE event is from 6 p.m. – 9 p.m.  The Brian Sutherland Trio and the Mathew Wengerd Trio will fill the park with their own brand of musical magic. 
 
The Brian Sutherland Trio will open the show with their eclectic blend of musical styling.  Sutherland is a singer, songwriter who will easily switch from cello to guitar as he plays his own version of folk, pop, acoustic rock.  He is joined by band mates Zach Rogers and singer Adrienne Kneebone.  This group of Florida Southern graduates makes up a sound that audiences have struggled to categorize.  Their blend of styles and freedom to improvise places them in more than one genre.  Covering the great artists like Nat King Cole and George Gershwin, all the way to modern day crooners Jason Mraz and Michael Buble.
 
Mathew Wengerd completed his graduate studies in Jazz Performance at the University of South Florida. As a performer and composer, Wengerd has worked with various groups throughout Central Florida, including the Mars’ Trio, Free Time Jazz, and the Imperial Symphony Orchestra and with Tampa-based pianist Daniel Joiner. His current trio of jazz performers has a new catalogue of easily recognizable pop music arranged with reharmonization, paraphrasing, and composition, so that it fully represents the melodic, harmonic, and rhythmic structure of jazz. As grounds for sonic experimentation, the trio is glued together through Wengerd’s double bass to suit the requirements of the music. Think of iconic music and radio hits completely redone by a jazz trio.

The music series will take place in downtown Lakeland’s Munn Park located at 201 E Main St.  The event is FREE to the public and families are encouraged to attend. There will be food and drink vendors on site so bring a blanket and enjoy the beautiful setting of historic Munn Park with the smooth sounds of the Brian Sutherland Trio and the Matthew Wengerd Trio.
Music on the Promenade is proudly sponsored by the City of Lakeland.  Parking is available at the Main Street Parking Garage.  No glass bottles within the park please.  For more information regarding the series, contact Kevin Cook at 863/834-6264.

 

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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

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.

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.