Former Vero Beach City Councilman Randy Old is running this fall to regain a set on the Council. Old this week issued the following “update” on the proposed sale of Vero Electric to Florida Power and Light.
Short version: aiming to be signed by September 5th 2017, final FMPA approval by January 2018.
Longer Version: at Tuesday’s City Council meeting both Florida Power and Light’s (FPL) and Florida Municipal Power Agency’s (FMPA) representatives together with Vero Beach’s lawyer brought the Council up to date on the progress of the sale. The numbers have not changed and they are approximately as follows: FPL is paying $185 million, Vero is paying off its debt and exiting its Orlando Utility Commission (OUC) contract for $47 million, and exiting FMPA for $108 million leaving Vero with net proceeds of some $30 million.
FPL and Vero aim to get their agreement signed at the September 5th City Council meeting, then the agreement needs both State and Federal regulatory approval, which is projected to be granted by November 2017, FMPA needs to get its 19 cities to agree to the transaction during, during November and December, and then its board approval by January 2018.
While there were some ups and downs during the negotiations, the numbers ended up pretty much as they began, which is far better than any transaction talked about in the past. Tied into this agreement is the partial sale, which would be the mandatory solution if the full sale failed.
There was one major change, FPL will not need to use any of the land where Big Blue is presently located, and will build a new relay station across the street in the postal annex, which is a wonderful new development, initiated by FPL.
Vero Electric will no longer pay the $6 million management fee to the city each year, and how does the city use the proceeds of the sale to offset that annual shortfall.
My Opinion; The full sale will occur by early 2018; its terms are three times better than anything proposed in the past, Vero has proven that it cannot run a utility, and it residents have asked that it be sold. It is time to get past this contentious issue, and back to running the city.