The Utility Board approved KEYS' annual audit and Annual Comprehensive Financial Report (ACFR) for the Fiscal Year (FY) ended September 30, 2022, at their regular meeting on January 25th.
Per Bond Covenants, the Board engages an independent accounting firm to perform an annual audit of the financial statements of the Utility within 210 days after the close of the FY. James H. Hill CPA, partner with Utility Board auditor’s Oropeza & Parks CPA’s, explained that the unqualified opinion paragraph in the Independent Auditor’s Report states that, “in our opinion, the financial statements referred to above present fairly, in all material respects, the financial position of the Utility Board of the City of Key West, Florida, Keys Energy Services as of September 30, 2022 and 2021, and the changes in financial position, and cash flows for the years then ended in conformity with accounting principles generally accepted in the United States of America.” Hill went on to add that, “this is the highest level of assurance an auditor can provide.”
The regular meeting of the Utility Board took place at 5:00 p.m., Wednesday, January 25th, in the Board Room of Keys Energy Services’ Service Building, 1001 James Street, Key West.
Raiko Alfonso has been named Keys Energy Services’ (KEYS) Outstanding Employee of the First Quarter for 2023.
Alfonso has worked for the Utility for 5 years and currently serves as an Apprentice Operator/Maintainer in the Generation Department. In his current position, he assists and learns from the Operator/Maintainers in the highly skilled and complex operation and maintenance of a simple-cycle combustion turbine and diesel facility, including start up and shut down of plant systems, main combustion turbines, and diesel engines.
Alfonso was born in Cuba. He attended Key West High School. He enjoys spending time with his two children, Isla and Ivy.
The Employee of the Quarter Committee selects an employee four times a year for this award. Employees are considered for the award after being nominated by their peers. Final selection of the outstanding employee is based on several factors, which include attendance, attitude, efficiency, initiative, and job performance.
KEYS' Raiko Alfonso will celebrate his 5th anniversary with the Utility on January 22nd. Alfonso is an Apprentice Operator/Maintainer in the Generation Department. In his current position, he assists and learns from the Operator/Maintainer in the highly skilled and complex operation and maintenance of a simple-cycle combustion turbine and diesel facility, including start up and shut down of plant systems, main combustion turbines, and diesel engines.
KEYS was one of 25 Florida public power utilities recently recognized by the Florida Municipal Electric Association (FMEA) with a Restoring Communities Award. The award recognizes public power utilities that have either provided or received mutual aid following significant weather events to fellow public power communities in need, or provided exemplary service to their own community following significant emergency events.
Florida public power utilities were honored for their efforts to restore power quickly and safely when called on. This not only included providing mutual aid assistance following Hurricanes Ian and Nicole, but for other weather and non-weather-related emergencies and outages both in and out of state. During Hurricane Ian, KEYS’ crews were able to mobilize and restore power in a timely manner due to robust tree trimming and storm hardening efforts. KEYS also mobilized six linemen to assist with post-Hurricane Nicole power restoration efforts in Ft. Pierce, Florida. KEYS’ crew assisted personnel from other regional utilities and contractors with regional power restoration in the aftermath of the storm.
“Whether the need stems from a huge event – such as the volume of mutual aid coordinated for one of Florida’s most destructive hurricanes ever – to a smaller event that requires an extra truck or an extra set of hands, Florida public power utilities are always there for their fellow public power communities,” said Amy Zubaly, FMEA Executive Director. “While our investments in grid hardening are paying off in big ways with fewer outages and faster restoration times, knowing there will be someone to lean on when needed is one of the best parts of this nationwide system of mutual aid support. Congratulations to all the Florida public power utilities recognized for being part of that system.”
“We are proud to answer the call to serve our fellow public power companies when needed and are extremely grateful to those who have come to our aid in the past. Being part of this national network of support is one of the unique benefits of public power. It is all about community – our community here locally and the other communities across the country who are all part of the public power system,” said Lynne Tejeda, KEYS General Manager & CEO.
Mutual aid agreements enable electric utilities to call on each other for skilled emergency workers and supplies. Public power utilities across the country benefit from the strong network of mutual assistance partners through the American Public Power Association. These connections have created a reliable system where member utilities both request and offer assistance when there’s a need. FMEA is proud to serve as the mutual aid coordinator for Florida’s 33 public power utilities.
KEYS' Tyler Randolph will celebrate her 10th anniversary with the Utility on January 7th. Randolph is the Supervisor of Purchasing. In her current position, she supervises the daily operations of the Purchasing Section, including the warehouse.
KEYS' customers will experience a decrease in their January energy bills, as a result of reductions in natural gas costs.
An average KEYS’ residential customer consuming 1,000 kwh of electricity during the month of January will see a 8.2 percent decrease on their total energy bill. The bill will be $180.00 compared to $196.00 for the same consumption in December. The amount of the decrease will vary based on how much electricity a customer uses.
The Power Cost Adjustment (PCA) charge for the month of January will be $44.25 per 1,000 kilowatt hours (kwh), compared to $60.65 per 1,000 kwh in December. KEYS’ Energy Charge is $108.40 per 1,000 kwh for residential customers and assumes wholesale power costs of $62.20 per 1,000 kwh. When energy costs fluctuate above or below that $62.20 per 1,000 kwh, KEYS passes the increase/decrease along to customers via a PCA charge/credit.
“We are seeing additional relief on the natural gas front and can pass those savings on to customers during the first quarter of 2023,” said Lynne Tejeda, KEYS’ General Manager & CEO. “The price of natural gas became extremely volatile in 2022 and surged to unprecedented levels domestically and internationally.” She cited disruptions in natural gas production, reduced rig counts during the pandemic, lower gas storage inventory, and the exporting of fuel as a result of the war in Ukraine as drivers of the natural gas price increase.
In recent years, KEYS PCA had been a credit on energy bills. The credit was replaced with a charge in January 2022, and additional increases in March and June before decrease were implemented in October. Tejeda did not rule out future power cost adjustments. “As the cost of natural gas fluctuates, KEYS will adjust the PCA charge,” she said. “We will be monitoring costs carefully and working with our power supplier to mitigate increases.”
Tejeda explained the total bill is driven by both the rate and energy usage. The rate is decreasing and as we move into Fall, consumption will likely decrease as well. Conservation is still helpful and customers can help offset the PCA charge by consuming less energy if they are interested in making some adjustments. She urged KEYS’ customers to log on to KeysEnergy.com and click on the Top 10 Energy Saving Tips link for tips on how to best conserve energy. While online, customers can sign-up for a FREE home energy survey, rebates for qualified energy efficient appliances, and receive information on how to better track their monthly energy usage.
Enrollment for Keys Energy Services’ (KEYS) discount program for qualifying Senior Citizens or Disabled American Veterans residential customers is now open. Customers who have previously participated in the program must re-qualify by March 31. Once qualified, customers will receive a $17.00 discount on their monthly energy bills in 2023.
In order to qualify for the Senior Citizen’s/ Disabled American Veteran’s Discount, senior citizens must be at least 62 years of age on the date of application and their annual household income must not exceed $43,524. Any disabled American veteran wishing to qualify for this program must be a 100-percent permanently disabled American veteran on the date of application, and their income cannot exceed the maximum annual dollar benefit based on the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs benefit rate table. The service address must either be the Customer of Record’s homesteaded property or, if a rental, their full-time residence. The customer’s monthly consumption cannot exceed 2,000 kilowatt hours based on their previous 12-month history.
All re-qualification applications for the discount must be completed, signed, and returned to KEYS no later than March 31.
Applications for this program have been mailed to all KEYS’ customers who have previously qualified. New applicants may download an application form at https://www.keysenergy.com/customer-service-requests, or by calling (305) 295-1090 to request an application be sent by mail.