Sarasota Power Position Paper
RE: May 28, 2010 expiration of the Florida Power and Light 30 year franchise agreement.
Sarasota Power is an informal group of citizens of Sarasota that are requesting the Sarasota City Commissioners to exhaust all possibilities of becoming their own utility prior to signing a new franchise agreement with Florida Power and Light. The advantages in a City owned utility are, but not limited to:
· We would have more control over pursuing a Renewable Energy Policy that will become an Economic Engine for jobs and business growth.
· Electric utility provider controlled by the City will be held accountable for their performance in reliability and responsiveness by the citizens of the city.
· The distribution systems will become an asset of the city.
· Funds that would normally have been profit for FPL can provide the city with the opportunity to pursue conservation and finance utility improvement projects such as: Renewable Energy projects, underground power lines, smart grid technology, fiber infrastructure, and stabilizing cost to the rate payer.
· Our rates would be locally controlled and would promote transparency of taxes
· The current franchise fee (which is just a pass thru tax for the citizens) and is not tax deductible. This fee could be collected in a way that would have more advantages to the taxpayer.
The City presently manages our Water and Sewer Utilities. This is an excellent example of how the city can manage an electrical utility or contract with an experienced and reliable provider to operate and manage the System. This, again, will create local jobs.
Energy is changing so rapidly. Knowing that our Federal Government is creating laws and incentives to accomplish a shift to Renewable Energy from fossil fuels, our City Commissioners must position the City to take advantage and control of our Energy Future. A 30 year Franchisee Agreement is not the answer. To explore our options with having our own utility, it will require more time.
We call on all city and county citizens to support our demand that the City Commission postpone any decision to renew the FPL 30 year Franchise Agreement, until the City properly evaluates all options and every effort is exhausted.