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The latest happenings in your city government.

On Tuesday, September 27, 2011 Sandra Trattner and Steve Wolfson generously announced that they are donating a bronze sculpture in honor of their parents Elaine and Wil Wolfson that will be placed at Main Street Overlook Park.  The bronze sculpture titled Mute Swan Protecting Her Cygnets will be placed in the nest where Main Street overlooks Lake Mirror Promenade.

Steve Wolfson said, “This piece of art tells our family story with the mother swan protecting her young and it will rest near the place where my grandfather stood when he first came to Lakeland in 1909.”  He added, “My sister and I are grateful to dedicate the sculpture in honor of our mom and dad.  Although we don’t live in Lakeland, the City has been such a huge part of our lives.”

The Wolfson family has a rich history that starts in Europe with Cy Wolfson emigrating from Russia to Ellis Island, NY and eventually settling in Lakeland as an early pioneer.  He became one of the very first retail shop owners in downtown. In the 1920’s Cy and Frances Wolfson owned and operated the Famous Department Store on the south side of Munn Park.

Wil is one of the four Wolfson children who grew up in Lakeland.  He attended the University of Florida Pharmacy School and served his country during WWII.  Wil and his two brothers fought in the South Pacific and had a battlefield reunion at Guadalcanal in 1944.  Wil married Elaine in 1946 and they had two children Sandra and Steve Wolfson.  Wil opened his first pharmacy in 1953, followed by two others before he retired in 1999. Today, he is 94 years old.

As a way of honoring their parents, Steve and Sandra are dedicating the larger than life bronze swan sculpture by renowned artist Ian G. Brennan.  Brennan has been a contemporary sculptor and woodcarver to the British Royal Household since 1989.  Mute Swan Protecting Her Cygnets is an original piece of art carved from a single English Lime Wood log.  It will be commissioned as an 8’ tall bronze piece of art that will nest overlooking Lake Mirror Promenade.  In the early 1950’s The Queen of England gifted a pair of Mute Swans from the Royal Flock to the City of Lakeland.  The descendent swan population remains a treasure to the community today.

The 8’piece of art will be cast in Sanford, Florida by the American Bronze Foundry.  The foundry is the largest of its kind in the Southeast specializing in fine art bronze sculpture castings.  The finished piece is planned find its permanent home overlooking Lake Mirror before the end of the year.

Governor Rick Scott Appoints Five to
Tenth Circuit Judicial Nominating Commission


Tallahassee, Fla. – Today, Governor Rick Scott announced the reappointment of Donald H. Wilson and the appointments of Kenneth B. Evers, Timothy J. McCausland, John H. Shannon and Robert S. Swaine to the Tenth Circuit Judicial Nominating Commission.

Wilson, 60, of Homeland, has practiced at Boswell and Dunlap L.L.P. for 30 years, where he serves as general counsel for Polk State College and handles various cases and transactions for the Polk County School Board.  He received a bachelor's degree from Stetson University and a law degree from the University of Florida. Wilson is reappointed for a term beginning September 22, 2011, and ending July 1, 2014.  He is appointed from the list of nominees submitted by the Florida Bar.

Evers, 43, of Wauchula, has been a sole practitioner since 2000. He is currently a member of the Kiwanis Club of Wauchula and served as president in 2000. Evers is also a member of Hardee County Bar Association and served in the United States Army from 1986 to 1989.  He received his bachelor’s degree from University of Florida and law degree from Stetson University College of Law.  Evers succeeds Richard Straughn and is appointed for a term beginning September 22, 2011, and ending July 1, 2015. 

McCausland, 60, of Bartow, has been the attorney for the City of Lakeland since 1992.  A member of the Florida Municipal Attorney’s Association since 1987, he served as president from 2010 to 2011. He is also the president of Palm Island Spice Company. McCausland served in the United States Army Reserve from 1971 to 1977 and received an associate degree from Polk Community College, a bachelor’s degree from the University of South Florida and a law degree from Florida State University College of Law. He succeeds Deborah Oates and is appointed for a term beginning September 22, and ending July 1, 2014.  He is appointed from the list of nominees submitted by the Florida Bar.

Shannon, 64, of Lakeland, has been a sole practitioner since 1975, excluding his service as the attorney for the City of Fort Meade during the 1990s.  He is a member of the Lakeland Bar Association, the Florida Justice Association and the American Association of Justice. A military veteran who served in the United States Marine Corps from 1969 to 1972, he received an associate degree from Edison Community College, a bachelor’s degree from Florida State University and a law degree from Cumberland School of Law.  Shannon succeeds Alejandro Pujol and is appointed for a term beginning September 22, and ending July 1, 2015.  He is appointed from the list of nominees submitted by the Florida Bar.

Swaine, 37, of Sebring, has been a partner at Swaine and Harris P.A. since 2003.  Previously, he was an associate at Frost, Van Den, Boom and Smith P.A. from 2001 to 2003.  He is currently on the executive council of the real property, probate and trust law section of the Florida Bar and has been a member since 2003.  Swaine has been a member of the Highlands County Bar Association since 2003 and served as President from 2007 to 2008. He has also served as attorney advisor for the Highlands County Teen Court since 2004.  Swaine received his bachelor’s and law degrees from Florida State University.  He succeeds Mitchell Franks and is appointed for a term beginning September 22, 2011, and ending July 1, 2015.


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Flamenco guitarist Nathan Herrera will perform at the Lakeland Public Library (100 Lake Morton Drive) in the library’s main seating area on Wednesday, September 28th at 7pm.  The hour-long program features music by Herrera accompanied by flamenco dancers.

Herrera has also studied locally with guitarist Jose Maria Moreno, in Miami with Paco Fonta, and with maestro Juan Diego.  He studied flamenco guitar and percussion in Seville, Spain with Juan Nunez.  He has participated in master classes with Pepe Romero, LA Guitar Quartet, Adam Del Monte, and Oscar Guzman. 

Nathan Herrera performs throughout the Southeast and in New York as well as internationally.  Mr. Herrera created the show American Gypsies with dancer Sandra Serrano which toured central Florida in 2006.  He has worked with various dance companies such as Oasis Flamenco, Flamencos Unidos, and the Florida Dance Theatre.  Alegria (2005), Herrera’s debut CD, is available at,, and

To find out more about Nathan Herrera, visit and

The programs at the Lakeland Public Library (100 Lake Morton Drive) are free and open to the public. For more information, call Brenda J. Patterson at (863) 834-4276 or send e-mail to




Kevin Cook
Director of Communications | City of Lakeland
228 S. Massachusetts Ave.  Lakeland, FL 33801



LAKELAND, FL (September 19, 2011) - The Lakeland City Commission voted to decrease the fuel charge for Lakeland Electric customers 75 cents per 1,000 kWh effective for meters read on or after October 3rd.  The new fuel charge will be $49.90 per 1,000 kWh.  As of October 3rd, Lakeland Electric residential customers will pay $109.42 for 1,000 kWh of electricity.


Past                 New Rates – Effective October 1, 2011

Base Rate        $59.52                                     $59.52

Fuel Charge    $50.65                                     $49.90

TOTAL:            $110.17                                  $109.42


With the decrease in the fuel charge, Lakeland Electric rates remain the 5th lowest out of the 37 utilities serving Florida residential customers and the 4th lowest in Florida for large commercial customers.  After listening to a staff presentation at the September 19, 2011 Utility Committee Meeting, the Lakeland Electric Utility Committee recommended to decrease the current fuel charge based on favorable natural gas prices.

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. 

The Utility Committee also voted unanimously to reduce the environmental compliance charge by 4% from $2.559 to $2.456 per 1,000 kWh. This vote was also passed by the City Commission during the September 19, 2011 meeting. 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. 

Visit for more information and to see a residential rate comparison.