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LAKELAND, FL (November 5, 2012) -- The Lakeland City Commission voted unanimously 7-0 in favor of a Smart Meter opt-out program for Lakeland Electric.  The program will allow Lakeland Electric customers to choose between a smart meter and a digital meter that must be read manually. 

Smart Meters offer customers added benefits over analog or digital meters.  With a Smart Meter customers can receive energy alerts, view daily energy use and smart meters automatically report power outages.  Smart Meter customers can participate in energy management by monitoring usage through their very own web portal.  Lakeland Electric customers can log onto www.mysmarterpower.com to view their daily energy usage.

Those customers wanting to opt-out of the Smart Meter program can do so by calling Lakeland Electric customer service at 863/834-9535.  There will be a $16.25/month charge for those customers who choose to opt-out because of the dedicated need to have meters read manually each month.  Smart Meters automatically report consumption so manual meter reads aren’t necessary.   The $16.25 monthly charge goes into effect March 1, 2013 for those who choose the opt-out program.  There is also a $65 dollar one-time meter replacement fee to change out a Smart Meter with a digital meter as part of the opt-out program.  This fee is waived until March 1, 2013.

Lakeland Electric has already installed over 115,000 Smart Meters to date and there will be over 120,000 installed by the end of December 2012 when the system is fully deployed. Installation of the new meters started March 2, 2011 as the first step in the overall Smart Grid initiative. The Smart Grid is the evolution of the nation’s utility grid to make it more effective, efficient and responsive to the needs of utility customers and the growing demands placed on the nation’s power industry. Lakeland Electric was one of 100 utility companies to be chosen to integrate into the Smart Grid through funding by a federal grant.

Lakeland Electric is the third largest public power utility in the State of Florida.  The utility is also one of the first utilities established in Florida having started operation in 1889.  Today, power is generated at Lakeland Electric’s two primary base load plant sites, the 937-megawatt McIntosh Power Plants and the 124-megawatt Larsen Power Plant. Lakeland Electric’s total generation capacity is about 1,100 megawatts.  For more information on Lakeland Electric’s Smart Meter program please visitwww.plugintosmart.com.

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CONTACT:

Kevin Cook

Director of Communications

City of Lakeland

863/834-6264

Twitter @lakelandgov

 

 

LAKELAND ELECTRIC LINEMEN TO ASSIST LONG ISLAND POWER AUTHORITY
IN RESTORATION EFFORTS AFTER HURRICANE SANDY

 

LAKELAND, FL (November 2, 2012) -- Lakeland Electric has 24 linemen and 15 vehicles leaving at 4 a.m. on Saturday, November 3rd to assist the Long Island Power Authority (LIPA) in restoration efforts.  The New York utility serves 1.1 million customers and at the peak 945,000 were without power after Hurricane Sandy devastated the area.  LIPA lost 50 substations and 21 hospitals were without power after the storm.  As of today, LIPA still has over 500,000 customers without power and it is estimated that some may be without power for weeks.

Rick Bibby, Electric Delivery Operations Manager for Lakeland Electric said, “The line crews will be departing Lakeland early in the morning for the 1,200 mile trek to Hicksville, New York. Once there they will join other utilities from Florida and other states as far away as California to help the customers of the Long Island Power Authority.”  He added, “Lakeland has sent 55 contract tree trimmers to assist in the Long Island area earlier this week. We anticipate the restorations will take approximately two weeks.” 

Even though LIPA lists over 500,000 customers without power, officials with the utility estimate that there may be as many as 100,000 or so homes and businesses, mostly along Long Island's South Shore that have such extensive damage that service cannot be restored until private contractors repair or rebuild them. Michael Hervey, LIPA's Chief Operating officer said that in some cases, there are no structures left at all.

Lakeland Electric is the third largest public power utility in the State of Florida.  The utility is also one of the first utilities established in Florida having started operation in 1889.  Today, power is generated at Lakeland Electric’s two primary base load plant sites, the 937-megawatt McIntosh Power Plant and the 124-megawatt Larsen Power Plant. Lakeland Electric’s total generation capacity is about 1,100 megawatts.

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A Halloween costume will not disguise your drunk or drug impaired driving. In 2010, more than 10,000 people died in alcohol-impaired driving crashes - one every 51 minutes.

Officers will increase their patrols to specifically look for drunk drivers on our roadways. The stepped up enforcement runs through Sunday, November 4th.

Halloween night is one of the deadliest times of the year for drunk drivers. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reported that 48 percent of highway deaths nationwide on Halloween night in 2010 involved a drunk driver.

The Lakeland Police Department recommends these simple tips for a safe Halloween celebration:

  • Plan a safe way home before the festivities begin.
  • Before drinking, designate a sober, ‘non drinking’ driver.
  • If you’re impaired, take a taxi, call a sober friend or family member, or use public transportation.
  • If you happen to see a drunk driver on the road, don’t hesitate to report drunk drivers, Call 911.
  • And remember, Friends Don’t Let Friends Drive Drunk. If you know someone who is about to drive while impaired, take their keys and help them make other arrangements to get to where they are going safely. 

LAKELAND, FL (October 19, 2012) -- The City of Lakeland has just released a mobile app called Link2Lakeland that is on the Apple, Android and Windows platforms.  Link2Lakeland was developed by an in-house team comprised of members from the Department of Information Technology and the Communications Department.  

The app features a mobile version of the City’s Citizens Action Center that serves as a central communications point for citizens to report a concern, make a suggestion or ask questions.  If a user happens to see a broken sidewalk or pothole that needs to be repaired they can take a photo or use the set location feature to drop a pin that highlights exactly where the issue is located. 

The Link2Lakeland mobile app also features a community calendar that allows users to view upcoming events.  A user can click on an event for a brief description and the user can have the mapping feature display directions to the event.  There is also a list of frequently called numbers broken down by City Department. 

Mobile users can stay connected to the City of Lakeland’s social media networks through the Link2Lakeland app.  The City’s official FaceBook page, Twitter feed and YouTube channel can be accessed very easily with the touch of the screen.  Citizen engagement makes Lakeland a better place and the community is encouraged to join the conversation through social media to learn what the City does each day and how they can play a part. The Link2Lakend app also allows smart phone users to follow the latest in City of Lakeland news with the LakelandGov Mobile news blog.  The most recent news posts are highlighted so citizens can stay informed on City initiatives and programs.

The iPhone app is available through the iTunes App Store and can be found by searching Link2Lakeland.  Android phone users can find the City of Lakeland’s app on the Google Play app store and Windows phone users can visit their game and app store to download Link2Lakeland.  Those with a smart phone are encouraged to stay informed and get connected through the Link2Lakeland mobile app.

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