FSEC Policy Advisory Board
February 27, 2009
Attendees: Judy Albertson, Paul
Allen, John Anderson, Addison Bain, Tommy Boroughs, Griff Carrison,
Pete DeNapoli, Mike Draper, Mike Faas, John Fix, Steve Gorman, C.T.
Hsu, Robert Jenkins, Colleen Kettles, Syd Kitson, Roger Messenger,
Louis Rotundo, Robert Salonen (on behalf of Lynda Weatherman), M.J.
Soileau, Jeremy Susac (call-in, on behalf of Alexander Mack), Mickie
Valente, David Winslow
Guest: Al Harms (UCF)
- Chairman Tommy Boroughs called the meeting to order at 10:10
a.m. and welcomed the Board members and guests. PAB
members and FSEC staff introduced themselves. C.T. Hsu
announced that his firm has purchased a semiconductor plant
- Motion made by Roger Messenger to accept the Minutes of the
September 11, 2008, meeting and seconded by John Fix. Minutes
approved as submitted.
- Tommy Boroughs advised the Board that he has appointed an
Executive Committee consisting of himself, Syd Kitson, Louis
Rotundo and M.J. Soileau. They have had one meeting by
- Jim Fenton presented a review of FSEC activities, including
the status of the OPPAGA (Office of Program Policy Analysis
and Government Accountability) review of September 29, 2008,
and results of the FSEC External Team Review on October 6-7,
2008, the Strategic Plan and the federal stimulus package. This
$16.8 billion stimulus is to be spent by October 2009 (EERE,
HUD, other energy-related programs). Dr. Soileau stated
that it is unknown exactly how the proposals will be selected,
and emphasized that there will be a flood of applications like
we have never seen.
- Griff Carrison asked about what is causing the testing and
certification delays – staffing, or what? Jim Fenton’s
response was that the delays are being caused by many things – many
steps need to be completed; additional equipment is needed,
an increase in personnel is needed, etc. Steve
Gorman asked what our goal timeline is from submission to completion
of test, and Jim Fenton and Philip Fairey advised that our
goal is 120 days. Dr. Soileau stated that this issue
needs to be fixed and it will be fixed.
- Griff Carrison stated that Sarasota County has formed a task
force on solar water heating utilities.
- Judy Albertson asked if FSEC can make a saleable product
to make money, and Dr. Soileau mentioned the issue of intellectual
- Louis Rotundo stated that there are nearly a dozen “energy-related” bills
on the floor this session, but they aren’t really energy
related. Rep. Keith Fitzgerald is sponsoring HB 1317
on Renewable Energy, which would establish the "Florida
Renewable Energy Freedom Act." Tommy Boroughs stated
that the Legislature needs to look at those things we can
actually implement toward creating a renewable market; Lee
Constantine said he would be in favor of a feed-in tariff.
- Discussion of Board business: Pete DeNapoli
asked what we can do to help with all of this. Dr.
Soileau stated that the University must all go through the
Florida Board of Governors, and FSEC can be an information
resource, but cannot take a political position. The
Advisory Board can support any documentation of the Legislature. It
is also appropriate for us to work with the Brevard Legislative
Delegation and provide information to them. The priority-setting
is done through the Board of Trustees and then the Board
of Governors. UCF can work with us in getting to the
appropriate Legislative entities. Louis Rotundo asked
what instructions have been given by the Board to the University
lobbyists. Dr. Soileau stated that the University cannot
- Tommy Boroughs suggested that the members consider
have three meetings a year instead of two. No decision
was made at this time.
- Group broke briefly for lunch buffet and reconvened at 12:40
- Pete DeNapoli said the Board of Trustees needs to come to
FSEC and recommended that the Advisory Board enable FSEC
to directly provide information to Florida Legislators on
the importance of aggressive education and training and certification
programs to create new jobs; allow FSEC to offer views on
the appropriate mechanisms to stimulate deployment. Roger
Messenger stated that there is a strong need to upgrade the
testing facility to get rid of the backlog. Pete DeNapoli
said it may be important to let the Legislature know about
the testing issues. Louis Rotundo said what is needed
now is for the long term; start this process in June. For
the short term, we need to say this is a priority for the
University. The PAB needs to instruct the University
lobbyist to obtain some of the funding out of the federal
stimulus package. Dr. Soileau stated this Board will
take that message to the Legislature. Pete DeNapoli
then made the following motion:
- Recommend that the Florida Solar Energy Center (FSEC)
Policy Advisory Board directly provide information to
the Florida legislators and agencies on the importance
of aggressive and immediate education, training and certification
programs on solar energy as a means of creating new jobs,
providing energy security, and assuring the public safety
through the use of solar energy.
- Additionally, the FSEC Policy Advisory Board views
the use of appropriate incentive mechanisms (like feed-in
tariffs) as a method to stimulate the rapid deployment,
utilization and creation of jobs in Florida.
- Roger Messenger moved that we support our Chairman;
Steve Gorman seconded. Motion passed.
- Jeremy Susac called in at
1:15 p.m. and led a discussion of Florida Energy & Climate
Commission activities. Dr. Fenton asked
if there was anything new to add in the way
of stimulus funding in energy areas. Mr.
Susac replied that they have asked for guidelines,
which were supposed to be out this week, but
that did not happen, so hopefully next week;
too many incentives right now. Griff
asked if nuclear was included in the draft
goals, and Mr. Susac said no, but it was included
in the report. Dr.
Fenton asked about the FESC role; FSEC does
not have a direct role. Mr. Susac replied
that was correct, but we could be working as
one and then Tommy could report to the Commission. Steve
Gorman: Any numbers
to the Legislature regarding funding of the
rebate program? Mr.
Susac: We put in for $5M, but will probably
use stimulus dollars when they become available. Tommy
Boroughs asked about feed-in tariffs like GRU
has done with solar, and Mr. Susac stated that
it was too premature; we need something to
stimulate solar, stimulate renewables.
- Tommy Boroughs suggested
we have someone at a higher level from FPL
and/or Progress Energy meet with us and then
talk to Jeremy Susac.
- Meeting adjourned at 2:10