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NEWS RELEASE


12/14/2009 Contact: 850-413-6482

Need Determination Hearing Set for Gainesville Renewable Energy Plant


TALLAHASSEE — The Florida Public Service Commission (PSC) will conduct a hearing on Wednesday, December 16 to determine the need for a proposed biomass plant in Gainesville.  The 100 megawatt plant, which will burn woody biomass, is a joint project of Gainesville Regional Utilities (GRU) and Gainesville Renewable Energy Center, LLC.  GRU is owned by the City of Gainesville in Alachua County and serves approximately 90,000 retail and wholesale customers in Gainesville and surrounding areas.

As part of the need determination process, the PSC must consider the need for electric system reliability and integrity, adequate electricity at a reasonable cost, fuel diversity, and fuel supply reliability.  The Commission must also consider the utility’s use of other available renewable energy sources as well as conservation measures in determining the need for the proposed plant.

Environmental impacts and other issues related to the power plant and associated facilities will be considered by other agencies with jurisdiction.

The hearing provides an opportunity for the public to testify and for the utility and other interested parties to present evidence and testimony concerning the need for the proposed generation addition.

The hearing is set for the following time and location:

Wednesday, December 16, 2009
9:30 a.m.
Betty Easley Conference Center
Joseph P. Cresse Hearing Room (Room 148)
4075 Esplanade Way
Tallahassee, Florida

The PSC is committed to making sure that Florida's consumers receive their electric, natural gas, telephone, water, and wastewater services in a safe, affordable, and reliable manner. The PSC exercises regulatory authority over utilities in the areas of rate base/economic regulation; competitive market oversight; and monitoring of safety, reliability, and service.

For additional information, visit www.floridapsc.com.



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