Alachua County/Gainesville Residents: For the fourth year in a row, Senator Keith Perry is working to remove all accountability from our municipally-owned utility and to move it one big step closer to privatization. At the Legislative Delegation meeting on Jan. 30th, there were more than half a dozen people who spoke against the bill (not a single person was there in support of it). After each speaker the audience erupted in robust applause. This was a clear sign that the nearly 200 people in the auditorium all agreed the bill should be withdrawn. Yet, both Perry and Clemons voted to advance the bill.
Here are a few things you might want to mention:
HB759 is not necessary because:
1. A Utility Advisory Board is now in place & making productive recommendations to the City Commission.
2. Citizens don’t want it. If they did, they would have started their own local petition process.
3. It will very possibly derail the negotiations GRU is engaged in with GREC regarding the city possibly purchasing the biomass plant.
4. Perry is well aware that this is a contentious political issue that will divide our community. Why does he want to do that?
Another action you can take is to write a column for The Gainesville Sun (500 word max) or at least a letter to the editor (150 word max). You can see Susan Bottcher’s excellent letter here, and here is the link to The Sun’s online submission page.