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City of Lakeland
City of Lakeland
City of Lakeland's Blog

The City of Lakeland Parks Division will be on Lake Morton at 7:30 a.m. Tuesday, October 9th for the 32nd Annual Swan Roundup. Crews will be catching and herding the swans as the initial part of their annual veterinary check-up.The swans will be confined in large holding pens on the south side of the lake for inoculations and wellness examinations that will start Wednesday morning, October 10th at 7:30 a.m. with Patricia Mattson, DVM.

The Annual Swan Round-Up allows Lakeland's Parks and Recreation Department to closely monitor the health and vitality of Lakeland’s swan population. On Wednesday morning, each swan will be given a wellness examination by veterinarian Patricia Mattson. They will also be weighed, vaccinated, and given a microchip if necessary so their health can be easily tracked.

The original swans on Lake Morton were donated by Queen Elizabeth of the United Kingdom in 1957. The swans were first cared for by veterinarian (emeritus) and original "Swanvet" W.G. Gardner. As Lakeland’s swan flock grew, it became paramount to give the regal birds an annual health check so the Swan Roundup began. This practice started in 1980 and has continued every year since then.

Dr. Mattson has almost 20 years of experience in veterinary medicine. She the owner of Companion Animal Hospital a full service facility that provides general medical care, preventive medical care, vaccinations, health certificates, caesarean section, diagnostic services, on-site kennel, on-site laboratory testing, flea control, dietary counseling, spay/neuter, declawing, radiology, general surgery, dentistry, emergency services, microchipping, pharmacy services and boarding.


Lakeland Electric will celebrate Public Power Week during October 7-13, 2012 along with more than 2,000 other electric utilities that collectively provide electricity on a not-for-profit basis to 46 million Americans. 

“Public Power Week is a chance for Lakeland Electric to articulate why public power works in Lakeland.  We are absolutely dedicated to providing a high level of service at affordable rates,” said Joel Ivy, Lakeland Electric’s General Manager.

Public Power Week is an annual event that takes place throughout the nation.  It is sponsored in conjunction with the American Public Power Association (APPA) in Washington, D.C.  APPA is the service organization for community and state-owned electric utilities.

“We are proud to have served the customers of Lakeland Electric for over 100 years,” Ivy said.  “Lakeland Electric contributes to the area’s economic vitality.  We understand how critical electricity is for our customers and we strive to find better ways to deliver it efficiently, reliably, safely and with special attention to the environment,”

Lakeland Electric is Florida’s third-largest public power utility and it provides electricity to more than 120,000 customers. Power is generated at Lakeland Electric’s two main power plants, the 941-megawatt McIntosh Power Plant and the 110-megawatt Larsen Power Plant. The utility also operates a group of diesel unit’s capable of producing up to 50- megawatts for emergency purposes.

 


Today, during her State of the University address, USF President Judy Genshaft announced that the university plans to create USF Health System, and looks to Lakeland Regional Health Systems, Inc. to join as its inaugural member.

“The City of Lakeland has enjoyed a long history of having a community of high-quality physicians alongside its excellent hospital, Lakeland Regional Medical Center,” said Mayor Fields.  “We should celebrate the opportunity to continue building upon this history of excellence by adding nationally recognized research and education alongside our exceptional community-based health care delivery system.” 

Lakeland Regional Medical Center, with its 4,500 employees, and its active medical staff of 484 physicians, is the fifth largest hospital in Florida and operates the busiest single site Emergency Department in the entire State.  Elaine Thompson, PhD, FACHE, President and CEO of Lakeland Regional Health Systems, echoed Mayor Fields’ remarks adding, “Mayor Fields has been exceptionally supportive and insightful about the future of the region’s health care. He understands the significance of creating USF Health System, and the economic potential it brings to the City of Lakeland and our community.”

Later this month, Dr. Thompson will seek approval from the Lakeland Regional Health Systems, Inc. Board of Directors to formally join USF Health System.  “Joining USF Health System creates a relationship for the good of the organization, our medical staff, and the community we serve,” said Bill Mutz, Chairman of Lakeland Regional Health Systems, Inc.  “We expect the USF Health System to be a transformational and innovative partnership that will grow to include other hospitals and physicians across the region.” 

During the next several months, Dr. Thompson will be executing an extensive communication plan to share these future plans with the community.  “We recognize that our health care delivery system is on the brink of historic change, and we are already seeing a wave of consolidations and new affiliations across the Tampa Bay and Central Florida region,” said Mayor Fields.  “By joining USF Health System, Lakeland Regional Health Systems, Inc. will continue to strengthen and grow even better, but more importantly, the hospital will remain an asset of the City and it will continue to be led by a local Board of Directors made up of our own community leaders.”


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.