Wednesday, November 22, 2017
Business

Letters: Readers comment on business news

RECOMMENDED READING


Customers put utilities at bottom of the barrel | Sept. 1

Consider not-for-profit model

Robert Trigaux's column was great but, if space had permitted, it would have been even better if he had included not-for-profit electric companies owned by municipalities.

There are 34 municipally owned electric companies in Florida located throughout the state, serving 25 percent of the population. The largest city is Jacksonville. Others are Orlando, Lakeland, Gainesville and Tallahassee.

According to the American Public Power Association, a majority of U.S. consumers believe municipal utilities offer lower rates, are more concerned about the environment, allow more control over utility operations, and have better service than private investor-owned power companies

A report compiled by the Florida Municipal Power Agency reveals that in 2012 customers of many of Florida's locally owned electric utilities enjoyed quicker repairs, shorter outages and fewer interruptions in service than customers of private utilities.

In addition to providing lower-cost service, many municipal electric companies return money to the cities, lowering other taxes. This is like paying dividends to the citizens of those cities who are the real shareholders. These "profits" are not used for bonuses, stock options and overly generous retirement plans for already overpaid executives. This money is not used for distribution to stockholders who probably don't have any interest in or live anywhere near the cities served. This money does not have to be wasted on highly paid lobbyists or on political contributions to influence politicians and the Public Service Commission to ensure that they can raise rates to increase profits.

The old saw, believed by some, is that government can't do anything as well as private enterprise. I am not aware of any city that wants to privatize its municipally owned electric company.

Tom Meyers, Tampa

Comments
Across country, small retailers aim for emotional ties big chains may lack

Across country, small retailers aim for emotional ties big chains may lack

Associated PressSome smaller retailers will tug at shoppers’ heartstrings during the holidays, trying to create an emotional experience or connection that a big national chain might not provide.Store owners are going well beyond the usual holiday dec...
Updated: 10 hours ago
Six years and counting: Allegiant Air reaches agreement with flight attendants

Six years and counting: Allegiant Air reaches agreement with flight attendants

ST. PETERSBURG — After six years of negotiations, Las Vegas-based Allegiant Air and its flight attendants union reached a tentative contract to improve worker pay and benefits and solidify airline policies."We feel like it’s an agreement that is cert...
Updated: 12 hours ago
Workers at luxury St. Pete condo tower say they are owed thousands

Workers at luxury St. Pete condo tower say they are owed thousands

ST. PETERSBURG — Nearly three dozen workers at ONE St. Petersburg, a luxury condo tower under construction in the heart of downtown, haven’t been paid in weeks and are owed thousands of dollars.With the holidays nearing, some of the men say they are ...
Published: 11/22/17
Some cities faced with all-or-nothing medical marijuana rules are playing it safe

Some cities faced with all-or-nothing medical marijuana rules are playing it safe

When it comes to weighing the options for regulating medical marijuana through the law passed this year, Dunedin city commissioners declared local governments face a "conundrum" and "a false dilemma."They said they would welcome a dispensary in the c...
Published: 11/22/17
More guns being detected at Tampa Bay area airports — and everywhere else

More guns being detected at Tampa Bay area airports — and everywhere else

TAMPA — Here’s some travel math for this traditionally heavy day for long trips: More people carrying guns plus more people flying equals more guns going to the airport.The numbers bear this out. The federal Transportation Security Administration has...
Published: 11/22/17
A year after impasse, Pasco school contract talks run more smoothly

A year after impasse, Pasco school contract talks run more smoothly

LAND O’LAKES — Representatives from the Pasco County school district and the United School Employees of Pasco sat together several times in the weeks leading to Thanksgiving break, trading contract proposals amid (mostly) amicable conversation.They c...
Published: 11/22/17

Florida Supreme Court suspends two Hillsborough lawyers

Times Staff WriterTwo Hillsborough County lawyers have been suspended from practice because of professional misconduct.The Florida Supreme Court ordered a 91-day suspension for Richard Luther Bradford of Brandon after he was found in contempt for fai...
Published: 11/22/17
Get all the Black Friday sales circulars today. Here’s how

Get all the Black Friday sales circulars today. Here’s how

The Tampa Bay Times Thanksgiving Early Bird edition, with all of the Black Friday ads and sales circulars, is available today.That’s right. You don’t have to wait until Thursday to check out the savings. Weighing nearly five pounds, the Early Bird Ed...
Published: 11/22/17
U.S. business leaders say Cuba is still open, at least to them, despite Trump’s new rules

U.S. business leaders say Cuba is still open, at least to them, despite Trump’s new rules

WASHINGTON — When the Trump administration announced new Cuba regulations, it sparked a new round of hand-wringing in Washington over a return to a posture not seen since the Cold War. But now, the American business community is quietly spreading the...
Published: 11/22/17
Here’s when stores will open on Thanksgiving and Black Friday

Here’s when stores will open on Thanksgiving and Black Friday

Although the crowds might still be unruly and the lines long, Black Friday as "The Day" is slowly waning. Steve Kirn, a University of Florida professor and executive director for the David F. Miller Center for Retailing Education & Research, said the...
Published: 11/21/17
Updated: 11/22/17