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‘Restoring Communities’

Saturday, January 16, 2021

This week, the Florida Municipal Electric Association announced its annual “Restoring Communities Awards,” which recognizes public power utilities that have helped get the power back on after it’s knocked out by severe weather or other emergencies.

The winners: GRU, City of Tallahassee, OUC, Town of Havana, JEA, Lakeland Electric, KUA, UCNSB, FPUA, City of Homestead, Keys Energy Services, Beaches Energy Services and the Ocala Electric Utility.

“The utilities celebrated today went above and beyond to help public power communities in need, and to make matters more challenging, did so during a pandemic. While we’re happy to put 2020 behind us, we will not forget our members’ level of service and commitment to powering our communities,” said Allen Putnam, FMEA president and utilities director of Beaches Energy Services. “Whether utilities are responding to their neighboring community or venturing into other states, mutual aid has and will continue to uplift public power everywhere.”

Despite the pandemic, Florida’s public power communities provided mutual aid to other communities nearly a dozen times between February and December, most recently on Christmas morning following severe storms across Florida.

“The public power utilities honored today truly embody the dedication and neighborly spirit of mutual aid,” FMEA Executive Director Amy Zubaly said. “While 2020 seemed to unfold with challenge after challenge, our public power members adapted quickly to respond to partners in need. Many of our members responded to back-to-back events that kept them away from their homes and families for weeks at a time, but they answer the call for help every time, even on Christmas Day.”

For a glimpse of the City of Tallahassee’s award-winning utility workers, click here. 

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