Energy Choice Amendment looks like a bad choice for Floridians

Energy Choice Amendment looks like a bad choice for Floridians

Javier Manjarres
Javier Manjarres
August 26, 2019

The idea of Floridians having a choice in energy, like the choice in Healthcare, could prove to be more problematic and costly to consumers than efficient.

The Energy Choice Amendment, a measure that could give Floridian’s a choice in energy, could very well make it on the ballot and pass if it is able to garner 60% support on election day next year.

The amendment, which the Florida Supreme Court is still examining, could deregulate the state’s energy utility industry and raise monthly bills.

The ballot initiative is not etched in stone, as supporters are still trying to garner the necessary petition signatures to get it on the ballot.

Florida’s energy sector and its supporting organizations are fighting back, stating that the amendment was written using disingenuous language to sell the measure.

The Florida League of Cities, who represents more than 400 cities, towns and villages across the state, recently published an opposing resolution to the proposed ballot initiative, all-but eviscerates the proposed energy amendment, calling it a puppeteering game that is “vague and misleading to voters” and should be “stricken from the ballot” by the courts.

The League, which has been known to protect the rights of millions of Floridians, including their right to have reliable, responsible and affordable energy, posted a slew of organizations that have “challenged the sufficiency of the Ballot Title and Summary of the initiative” including The Florida Chamber of Commerce and Attorney General Ashley Moody.

The resolution also says that the measure would “adversely impact local government” and local tax bases that would lead to a loss of over $700 million.

Here are some of the points that the FLC resolution touches on:

WHEREAS, if passed, the initiative would materially and adversely impact local government electric utility franchise fees, public service taxes, and ad valorem taxes; and

WHEREAS, if passed, the initiative would strip local governments of their Home Rule powers to determine who provides electric utility service within their jurisdictions; and

WHEREAS, if passed, the initiative would abolish the basis for exclusive franchises for the generation and sale of electricity, which are contractual in nature and largely created by legislative acts of local governments; and

WHEREAS, the loss of these franchise agreements could result in the loss of over $700 million in local government annual revenue; and

WHEREAS, if passed, the initiative would cause Florida’s local governments to incur significant revenue losses from a diminution in public service tax revenues levied on the purchase of electricity within their jurisdictions and in ad valorem revenues from the divestiture of investor-owned utility assets; and

WHEREAS, if passed, the initiative would impair the contractual arrangements that numerous local governments have with investor-owned utilities to purchase and sell electricity to their citizens; and WHEREAS, drastic changes to Florida’s energy regulatory policy should be done legislatively, not through a constitutional amendment; and

WHEREAS, the Energy Choice Initiative is the wrong choice for Florida, as similar “deregulation” efforts have demonstrated in nearly every state that has tried it.

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Javier Manjarres

Javier Manjarres

Javier Manjarres is a nationally renowned award-winning political journalist and Publisher of,,, and He enjoys traveling, playing soccer, mixed martial arts, weight-lifting, swimming, and biking. Javier is also a political consultant and has also authored "BROWN PEOPLE," which is a book about Hispanic Politics. Follow on Twitter: @JavManjarres Email him at

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