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09/17/2014 ~ Keys Energy Services (KEYS) has once again been made aware of a local scam that is targeting utility customers with the aim to have energy bill payments wired to fictitious accounts.

Under the scam, customers are informed that their electric account is scheduled to be disconnected for non-payment. They are then instructed to wire the payment to a fictitious account to avoid immediate disconnection of service. The scammers appear to be using the pressure of having service disconnected as a means to have victims erroneously wire money. Well informed individuals have prevented the fraud from being perpetrated, but all KEYS’ customers are advised to remain vigilant to avoid falling prey to the scam.

“If customers are unsure of the authenticity of a call and need to verify its legitimacy, they should contact KEYS at (305) 295-1000 and ask to speak with a Customer Services representative,” said Lynne Tejeda, KEYS’ General Manager & CEO. She went on to add that, “at that time they can check the status of their account and verify their account information.”


09/12/2014 ~ Keys Energy Services (KEYS) will re-launch its popular rebate program for energy efficient appliances and equipment on Friday, September 19th. The re-launch will coincide with a State of Florida sales tax holiday that will take place Friday, September 19th, through, Sunday, September 21st, for energy efficient products bearing the Energy Star and WaterSense labels.

“Replacing old, energy-hogging appliances can create major savings on monthly energy bills, but investments in energy efficient appliances, while cost-effective in the long-run, may not be affordable in the short-term,” said Lynne Tejeda, KEYS’ General Manager & CEO. She added that, “with the help of KEYS’ rebate program, and the added incentive of a sales tax holiday, the initial purchase costs can be greatly offset.”

The rebate program will see the return of the 14 appliances for residential customers, which include those for: Programmable Thermostats ($25); Ceiling Fans ($25); White Roof Coating ($25); Dehumidifiers ($50); Dishwashers ($55); Room Air Conditioners ($75); Refrigerators ($75); Freezers ($75); Clothes Washers ($100); Duct Leak Repairs or Replacement ($150); Ductless Air Conditioners ($175); Central Air Conditioners ($250); and Solar Hot Water Heaters ($450). Commercial customers are eligible to apply for an LED Exit Sign rebate ($10 each) with a limit of five per account. The terms of the rebate program allow customers to receive more than one rebate per appliance type within a designated timeframe.

Per the terms of the sales tax holiday, the first $1,500 of the sale price of a new Energy Star or WaterSense product will be exempt from sales tax. It also limits a buyer to one purchase of each specific type of product with a sales price of $500 or more. A second or subsequent purchase of a specific type of Energy Star or WaterSense product with a sales price of $500 or more is subject to tax.

Qualifying Energy Star projects for the sales tax holiday include: air conditioners; air purifier; ceiling fan; clothes washer; clothes dryer; dehumidifier; dishwasher; freezer; refrigerator; water heater; swimming pool pump; and a package of light bulbs that is designated by the United States Environmental Protection Agency and the United States Department of Energy as meeting or exceeding each agency’s requirements under the Energy Star program and that is affixed with an Energy Star label.

“This great sales tax holiday gives Floridians the opportunity to save on the purchase of these items, as well as save in the long-term through lower utility bills. In addition to putting money back in the pockets of taxpayers, it also encourages the conservation of our precious energy and water resources,” said State of Florida Representative Holly Raschein. She went on to add that, “it is a key component to the Florida Legislature and Governor Rick Scott’s plan to cut taxes and fees by $500-million this year.

KEYS’ customers looking for more information on the rebate program should log on to on September 19th and click on a home page banner that will be activated on that day. Once online, KEYS’ customers can select from the 14 rebate options available and download the applicable forms and applications.

Rebates will be awarded to eligible KEYS’ customers on a first-come, first-served basis and the rebate program will end when funding is no longer available. KEYS is set to award approximately $95,000 in rebates, which will be added to approximately $550,000 it has provided in rebates since 2008.

PHOTO CAPTION:(From left) KEYS’ General Manager & CEO Lynne Tejeda and State of Florida Representative Holly Raschein inspect an Energy Star rated refrigerator, that qualifies for KEYS’ rebate program and the State of Florida sales tax holiday, in the Key West Home Depot.


09/11/2014 ~ The Utility Board held a public hearing and approved Keys Energy Services (KEYS) Fiscal Year (FY)* 2015 budget and five-year financial plan, during their regularly scheduled meeting on Wednesday, September 10th. The approved FY 2015 budget for KEYS is $97.4-million. The budget takes into account a half-percent base rate decrease for KEYS’ customers during FY 2015. KEYS has reduced energy bill rates since FY 2009 by 3.95-percent.

“The Utility Board requested a balanced budget and a rate decrease, KEYS’ staff identified projects which could be postponed or eliminated without affecting reliability,” said Lynne Tejeda, KEYS’ General Manager & CEO.

In FY 2009 a residential customer with 1,000 kilowatt-hours** of consumption, a typical usage cited when making comparisons, had a bill of $156.17. Taking into account annual base rate decreases since FY 2009, in FY 2015 that same customer will have a bill of $133.83 if their consumption remains unchanged.

In other business, the Board:

- Awarded a piggy-back unit price contract for pole inspection and treatment services to Osmose Utilities Services, Inc., for an estimated amount of $705,217.38. This contract will cover the inspection of approximately 14,000 utility poles with regard to ongoing storm hardening upgrades. The contract is a piggy-back through the City of Homestead.

- Approved a customer service training and surveying agreement with Measure-X in the amount of $35,000. The contract will cover training for all KEYS’ employees as well as 50-monthly telephone customer surveys. Measure-X training and surveying is used at Fort Pierce Utilities Authority and the Florida Keys Electric Co-operative.

The regular meeting of the Utility Board took place at 5:00 p.m., September 10th, in the Louis Carbonell Board Room of the William Arnold Service Building, 1001 James Street, Key West.

*KEYS’ Fiscal Year runs from October 1st to September 30th.

** Kilowatt-Hour (kwh) – A common unit of electric energy consumption, and the basic unit of electric energy. Ten 100-watt light bulbs burning for one hour use one kwh.


08/29/2014 ~ Keys Energy Services’ (KEYS) recently donated $1,000 to Key West High School (KWHS) athletics for the 2014-2015 school year. KEYS donation, along with others from the community, will be used for facility improvements, athletic trainer supplies, transportation, and many other needs.

“KEYS is a long-time supporter of KWHS athletics, and we are pleased to once again help student athletes achieve success on the playing fields,” said Lynne Tejeda, KEYS’ General Manager & CEO.

PHOTO CAPTION: (From left) Utility Board Chair Peter Batty, Utility Board Member Barry Barroso, Utility Board Vice Chair Mona C. Clark, KWHS Athletic Director Neda Preston, Utility Board Members Charlie Bradford and Tim Root.


08/28/2014 ~ The Utility Board recently approved a payment to the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office (MCSO) in the amount of $348,343.42 for Keys Energy Services (KEYS) share of a new local 800 megahertz (MHz) Radio System.

The MCSO is in the process of replacing their aging 800 MHz radio system, which is shared by 41 local agencies. The total cost of the new Motorola system is approximately $4.1-million. KEYS currently has 129 radios on the system, which represents 8.431-percent of the subscribers.

“This local partnership is a great example of local agencies working together with a common goal and realizing the benefits of economies of scale,” said Lynne Tejeda, KEYS’ General Manager & CEO.

The regular meeting of the Utility Board took place at 5:00 p.m., Wednesday, August 27th, in the Louis Carbonell Board Room of the William Arnold Service Building, 1001 James Street, Key West.

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