City of Vero Beach approves electric system sale to FPL

VERO BEACH, Fla. - If you live in or around Vero Beach and use city power, you could soon be saving potentially hundreds of dollars per year on your power bill.

City leaders Tuesday voted 4-1 in favor of selling the city’s electric system to Florida Power and Light for $185 million, which would change the power provider for nearly 30,000 households.

The deal could be final by October 2018.

That would be the soonest customers could see an average of $20 savings on their monthly power bill, according to city officials.

This decision comes as good news to many city power customers who believed they were paying too much for their electricity under the city’s power utility. 

Home owner Richard Ogle says he’s been waiting for this decision for years.

“Finally. I mean, it’s been long enough,” Ogle said. “It’s always been a controversy.”

Homeowner Joe Montgomery is also glad about the sale.

“I think it’s going to be a very positive development.

According to the Florida Municipal Electric Association, Vero Beach is one of 34 municipal electric utilities in the state.

The deal could still face obstacles in the coming year.

The Florida Municipal Power Agency, which supplies electricity to local utilities, will need to vote unanimously to approve Vero Beach’s exit the FMPA.

Orlando Utilities, which sells power to Vero Beach, will have to end its contract with the city.

“I hope it’s going to work to the benefit of all Vero Beach residents,” Ogle said.

Florida Power and Light said it will offer employment to the near 70 city electricity employees who are qualified.

FPL released the following statement:

We are pleased with the City Council’s approval of the sale of its electric system to FPL. For years we have been working together towards this common goal that will bring FPL’s clean, reliable and affordable energy to Vero Beach’s residents. We look forward to continuing to work together to secure the necessary approvals with the goal of completing the sale by October 2018.

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