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Pasco judge tells Aloha to hand over streetlight records

DADE CITY — A judge has ruled that MMLJ Holdings, formerly Aloha Utilities, must hand over records pertaining to streetlight fees paid by customers of Tahitian Gardens, Tiki Village and other west Pasco communities.

The Florida Public Service Commission requested the information more than a year ago, after state Sen. Mike Fasano noticed Aloha Utilities had billed thousands of its water and sewer customers for streetlight services as well.

At issue is how much Aloha charged: Since Aloha was not regulated as an electric utility, it could not sell the streetlighting services at a profit. It could only pass along its own costs from Progress Energy.

If Aloha turned a profit on the streetlights, state regulators could require the company to give refunds to those customers.

The PSC began its inquiry in November 2009, and issued subpoenas last spring for these records. Aloha, which sold its water and sewer systems last year to a government coalition and now goes by the name MMLJ Holdings, has refused to provide the information.

Circuit Judge Susan Gardner ruled Dec. 3 that MMLJ must provide the requested documents within 30 days.

"I am hopeful that Aloha will finally comply with the PSC's subpoena now that a judge has ordered them to do so," said Fasano, R-New Port Richey. "If not, I hope that the PSC takes whatever legal avenues available to bring this matter to a satisfactory conclusion for the customers."

Pasco judge tells Aloha to hand over streetlight records 12/14/10 [Last modified: Tuesday, December 14, 2010 10:08am]
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