Stand Up for FPB Board Members and their Scrutiny of the KYMEA Contract
1- The FPB board has a fiduciary responsibility to scrutinize and understand their power contract with the KYMEA. They are following the advice of experienced independent consultants and they are doing their job, looking out for the interests of their customers.
2- The KYMEA contract was rushed to a vote under strong pressure from KYMEA in August 2016, over objections from community members and two board members. Since that time, a majority of the board has been working to better understand and improve the contract.
3- One problem with the KYMEA contract: It does not define what rates the FPB will pay to KYMEA and we still don’t know 15 months later. This and other ambiguities create risks for FPB customers – thus changes are needed to the contract.
4- Another problem: The contract has 10-year commitments to power suppliers that make exiting from the contract very difficult, a serious liability.
Contact your City Commissioners and urge them to support our FPB Board Members and their diligence to ensure the KYMEA contract serves the best interests of our community.
Mayor Bill May William.firstname.lastname@example.org
Tommy Haynes email@example.com
Scott Tippett firstname.lastname@example.org
Robert Roach email@example.com
Lynn Bowers 502-682-9342
Write Letters to the Editor and talk to your neighbors and local businesses. Help us dispel the confusion being spread around this issue.
· In 2014, FPB decided to switch away from its electricity supplier Kentucky Utilities, starting in 2019.
· In 2015 FPB joins with several other municipal utilities to form the KYMEA (Kentucky Municipal Energy Agency).
· In August 2016, without comparison to other options, public input, or debate, FPB entered into a power contract with KYMEA on a 3 – 2 vote. When board members and community members raised concerns about the contract, the KYMEA urged the board not to delay, telling them there was no benefit to delay and only risks.
· In November 2016, the FPB voted unanimously to hire independent energy and legal consultants to evaluate and advise them on the KYMEA contract.
· In June 2017 a national energy consulting firm, E3, presented their analysis of the KYMEA contract and recommendations. They advised the FPB to make changes to the contract to protect their customers. E3 raised concerns about the fact that we don’t know what rates KYMEA will charge or how they will calculate those rates; limitations on FPB’s rights to choose our power suppliers; and questionable management decisions by the KYMEA.
· The FPB voted to take action on E3’s recommendations, making numerous requests of the KYMEA and also directing the Board attorney to select legal counsel to advise the board on these issues.
· In August 2017 the KYMEA wrote a 49 page response that essentially refused to accommodate the FPB’s requests.
· In October 2017 the FPB board voted to hire the legal counsel they had selected.
· The FPB has had other low-cost power options. In 2016 Berea Municipal Utilities chose not to buy into the KYMEA power contract and instead will buy power from AMP Inc., from Ohio. Berea knows what their rates will be and expects to reduce their energy costs by 20%.
We want the FPB to continue their diligent effort to understand and improve the KYMEA contract, to ensure reliable, flexible, and affordable power for our community, and to make the KYMEA accountable to their customers.