GRU Authority plans for more meetings in first workshop 

GRU sign
Photo by Suzette Cook

The Gainesville Regional Utilities Authority established topics for future meetings and information for staff to include during its first workshop on Wednesday.  

The meeting was informational only, with no authority votes. But board members were able to share thoughts on big items that will come before the authority in the next year, like the integrated resource plan, general services contribution and the need for independent legal counsel for Gainesville Regional Utilities (GRU).  

With sizable debt, a new authority and a desire to change, GRU general manager Tony Cunningham said staff has added more meetings than just the once-a-month regular meeting the authority had planned.  

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“It’s a lot more meetings than we had originally thought of, so it’s more of a commitment to do that,” Cunningham said. “But I really think this is what we’re going to need to deliver to you in order for us to go through a business transformation of GRU.” 

The authority also asked for certain information to return at those upcoming meetings on topics like the debt reduction plan and the solar tariff feed-in program. Board Member Eric Lawson asked for staff to clearly show how different integrated resource plan scenarios would impact customer rates.  

The board members also asked to bring back legal considerations if GRU were to cut the general services contribution, the money sent by GRU to fund general government operations of the city of Gainesville.  

For the next meeting on Dec. 6, Board Member James Coats asked to place Cunningham’s employment contract on the agenda. He’d asked for the same at the Nov. 1 meeting.  

“I just want to push through that, and that way we can get on to business,” Coats said.  

The Dec. 6 meeting will include large items for discussion and action, including a liquidity facilities resolution, the general services contribution history, net-debt reduction plan, ratings and rating agencies along with the sale of the trunked radio system.  

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