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Federal Priorities

Public power communities urge your support on these issues to provide reliable, affordable power in an environmentally responsible manner. Download a copy of the Florida Municipal Electric Utilities Issues Summary.

INFRASTRUCTURE
Municipals Invest in Building, Maintaining Infrastructure

Public Power Utilities Finance $11 Billion in New Infrastructure Each Year

  • Municipal bonds are important for financing infrastructure.
  • 75% of U.S. infrastructure is financed with state and local tax-exempt bonds. More than $2 trillion in new infrastructure has been financed during the past 10 years.
  • Municipal electric utilities rely on municipal bonds for financing power plants, transmission lines and more.
  • We support Congressional proposals for new infrastructure and public-private partnerships but have concerns with the emphasis on privatization of public facilities and assets.
  • We urge Congress to take a comprehensive approach and streamline the permitting process, while preserving environmental protections.

Supporting Issue Briefs

ADVANCE REFUNDING
Support Legislation to Reinstate Advance Refunding

Advance Refunding Enables Municipal Utilities to Keep Costs Affordable

  • The federal tax overhaul eliminated the ability of state and local governments to advance refund outstanding tax-exempt bonds.
  • Tax-exempt advance refunding saves money for our customers by enabling us to reduce debt service costs and restructure debt service payments.
  • The state of Florida has saved billion of dollars in advance refundings, and Florida’s municipal utilities have saved millions.
  • We urge Congress to support H.R. 5003 to reinstate advance refunding.

RELIABILITY
Public Power Responded Quickly to Hurricane Irma

Local Utilities Have Invested to Make Their System Strong Everyday

  • Hurricane Irma was an unprecedented event that led to the largest pre-planned power restoration effort in U.S. history.
  • Every electric utility in Florida was impacted, including all 34 public power utilities.
  • Aid came from nearly2,000 lineworkers from more than 200 municipal utilities in 26 states to supplement Florida’s 1,000 public power crews.
  • Post-storm work continues in many of our communities, as utilities process financial reimbursements and work to comply with state and federal regulations and contract requirements.

POLE ATTACHMENTS
Public Power Supports the Deployment of Broadband

Proposed Legislation Would Create Burdensome Oversight and Increased Costs

  • Municipal utilities are concerned with attempts to create a uniform policy for access to privately owned infrastructure in the name of broadband deployment.
  • It has been suggested that Congress eliminate the municipal exemption from federal pole attachment regulations by the FCC and Senate Commerce Committee.
  • We oppose weakening or eliminating the municipal exemption that’s been in place since 1978.
  • Removing the exemption would go against Congress’ long-held belief that pole attachment rates charged by public power utilities are reasonable because they are “subject to a decision-making process based upon constituent needs and interests.”
  • The Florida Legislature exempted all Florida electric utilities in a wireless deployment bill passed in 2017.
  • We urge Congress to reject legislation that would subject municipal electric utilities to federal oversight.

Supporting Issue Brief

For More Information

Questions may be addressed to:

Mark McCain
Florida Municipal Power Agency
mark.mccain@fmpa.com, (888) 774-7606

Amy Zubaly
Florida Municipal Electric Association
azubaly@publicpower.com, (850) 224-3314

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