The Florida Municipal Electric Association (FMEA) Opposes the “Energy Choice” Amendment
The Florida Municipal Electric Association, Inc. (“FMEA”), is the statewide trade association for Florida’s 33 local government-owned public power utilities.2 Founded in 1942 in response to WWII fuel shortages, for more than 75 years FMEA has been committed to supporting its public power members and the local communities they serve with reliable and low cost electric service. FMEA’s member utilities provide electric service to approximately 14% of Florida’s statewide electric load, which exceeds three million Floridians.
LOCAL LEVEL—Finally, the Initiative has a distinct and substantial effect on local governmental entities in the state, including municipal-owned electric utilities like the Public Power Parties. First, the existing authority for municipalities and counties to enter into exclusive franchise agreements is eliminated. Second, the collection of franchise fees would be rendered void. And, third, the contractual framework for the Public Power Parties’ power supply, transmission service, and generating plant joint ownership is substantially impacted, because all of those existing contractual relationships with IOUs would necessarily be altered.
The Initiative’s title and ballot summary also affirmatively misleads voters and omits necessary and material facts in violation of section 101.161(1), Florida Statutes. The ballot summary sets up false and misleading expectations that Florida’s public power utilities will be unaffected by the Initiative unless they choose to “opt into competitive markets.” This misguided notion could allow the customers of public power utilities to vote under the mistaken belief that there is no impact on them as public power utility customers.
Read their full legal brief filed with the Florida Supreme Court here.