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City of Lakeland’s Monthly Newsletter

October 2013

IN THIS ISSUE

Lakeland Electric Website New and Improved

GEORGE RENNINGER INVENTS CANDY CORN GOELITZ CONFECTIONERY COMPANY BEGINS PRODUCTION (GOELITZ IS NOW CALLED JELLY BELLY CANDY COMPANY) When this popular treat shows up on the shelves, you know that Halloween is coming soon! Did you know that this candy favorite has been around since the

Company, the original candy

hasn't changed all that much. Today, however, automated manufacturing makes it possible to create millions of pounds of the confectionery treat every year. As you enjoy your spoils from this year's Trick o' Treating...

228 S. Massachusetts Ave. Lakeland, FL 33801 863.834.6000 www.lakelandgov.net

remember you're eating a part of history! HAVE A SAFE AND HAPPY HALLOWEEN!

75%{

9

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years later, the candy's recipe

OTHER HOLIDAYS CUPID CORN (VALENTINE'S)

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was poured by hand. Over 100

HALLOWEEN ACCOUNTS FOR

AL PR ANNU

of the Wunderlee Candy

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1880s? Invented by George Renninger, an employee

Lakeland Municipal Election: November 5

SUGAR CRISIS OF THE MID-70s RESULTED IN THE CLOSING OF MANY CANDY COMPANIES. CANDY CORN SAVED GOELITZ FROM BANKRUPTCY

REINDEER CORN (CHRISTMAS)

KERNELS

ION

Meet Margaret Orozco: Firefighter

CANDY CORN BECAME SO POPULAR THAT PRODUCTION COULD NOT KEEP UP WITH DEMAND

BILL

City of Lakeland Employees Give Back

1880 1898 1900 1970

PRODUCED EACH YEAR

LAID END-TO-END THEY WOULD CIRCLE THE MOON

21x

INDIAN CORN (THANKSGIVING)


Monthly Comparison of Residential Electric Rates

Source: Florida Municipal Electric Association (FMEA) Monthly Utility Bill Comparison • July 2013

www.lakelandelectric.com

*per 1,200 kWh usage

THE NEW AND IMPROVED L A K E L A N D E L E C T R I C . C O M Lakeland Electric customers may notice something new the next time they visit www. lakelandelectric.com. They will now find information faster and easier – thanks to a cleaner, modern look that features a stronger focus on customer service. Lakeland Electric streamlined its website so customers will have a better on-line experience. Customers will find information in less time and fewer clicks with much improved navigation. The City of Lakeland developed the sites using customer feedback and site analytics. Content that had heavy usage was designed to be accessed quickly from the home page making it easier for customers to find exactly what they want. An internal team with representatives from Lakeland Electric’s Customer Service Division, the Department of Information Technology and the Communications Department developed the new site with 100% of the focus on customers. “Our customers want more information at their fingertips – whether they are on the go with a mobile device or surfing online at home on a computer,” said Joel Ivy, General Manager of Lakeland Electric. “Our customers increasingly want to do more remotely and the site was developed to be easy to use no matter what kind of device they are using.” The new site was designed to simplify transactions and customers will be able to enter an enhanced e-Services portal that allows access to all City of Lakeland utility services. Leading the list of improvements on Lakeland Electric’s website is “responsive design” – which allows the screen to adapt to the device the customer is using, whether it’s a laptop, a smart phone or a tablet.

E-Services Include: • 24-hour online access to popular services • On-line ability for service changes so customers can open an account or transfer service • At-a-glance tabs on the e-Services portal so customers can view their City of Lakeland utility services • Interactive graphs so customers have the ability to view consumption and energy cost by month, day or the hour • Link to e-Billing, which allows customers to electronically receive their monthly statements and pay online • Temperature and weather information • Side-by-side bill comparisons • Personalized widget dashboard (weather, last usage readings, carbon calculator, usage projection) • Personalized service alerts/reminders

Going green has never been so easy. With Solar Hot Water Service you get a new solar water heating system with an 80 gallon water heating

tank installed and maintained in your home for FREE! Instead of using electricity for water heating you pay just $34.95 a month. Your electricity usage goes down and the solar service fee is fixed and never goes up—even if energy prices rise in the future. Plus, the larger solar tank with electric backup means your family will always have plenty of hot water. Enrolling your home is quick and easy!

Lakeland Solar Hot Water Service — your smart choice for clean energy!

Sign-up now and receive one month of Solar Hot Water Service—free!

Go online or call today! www.solarlakeland.com 863.577.7778


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LAKELAND EMPLOYEES GIVE BACK TALENT SHOWCASE

NOVEMBER 1 • 7-9 PM | MUNN PARK (PART OF FIRST FRIDAY) City of Lakeland employees would like to invite you to the 3rd Annual Lakeland Employees Give Back Talent Showcase being held in conjunction with the Downtown Lakeland Partnership’s First Friday event on November 1st. The show, scheduled from 6 p.m. - 9 p.m. in Munn Park, is free and open to the public as part of the First Friday event. The Lakeland Employees Give Back Talent Showcase was originally created to serve as a venue for City of Lakeland employees to share their talents with the community. City of Lakeland employees are known for their charitable activities including their annual contributions to the United Way totaling over $1.1 million over the past 10 years. “City of Lakeland employees have a compassion that runs deep because they live, work and play in the community,” said City Manager Doug Thomas. “They see this event as another opportunity to give back to the community.” Each participating act contains at least one City of Lakeland employee, a family member of an employee or a City of Lakeland retiree. Acts will be judged and winners will be selected for both a

Judge’s Choice Award and a People’s Choice Award. Attendees will have a chance to vote for their talent choice by donating $1 per ballot. All monies raised from the People’s Choice Award will be donated to the local United Way. First Friday is one of the most popular recurring events that takes place in downtown Lakeland. Every month, on the first Friday of the month (hence the name), people from all over the community converge in Downtown Lakeland for an evening of FREE family friendly entertainment, activities, live music, art receptions, a car show, and, of course, the chance to check out a great, locally-owned restaurant or retail establishment. The City of Lakeland is proud to partner with First Friday for the Employees Give Back Talent Showcase and we hope to see you downtown on Friday, November 1st. Guest Emcee Jennifer Holloway

LIKE US ON Polk County’s First & Only Half Marathon! Saturday, November 9, 2013 Start Times: 7 a.m. Half Marathon | 8 a.m. Fun Run The Red Ribbon Half Marathon & Fun Run is a family weekend where parents can compete in the Half Marathon and K-8th grade students can take part in a Kid’s Fun Run, which will loop around Lake Mirror. Free registration for K-8th graders includes a commemorative Run t-shirt! Festivities also include the Kids’ Health & Wellness Carnival on Friday evening, November 8, 2013 at LEGOLAND Florida. Register Online Today to get the best price for the Red Ribbon Half Marathon! Prices increase as the event draws closer. Please visit our official event web site at: www.redribbonhalf.com Follow us on Twitter: www.twitter.com/RedRibbonHalf Like us on Facebook at: www.facebook.com/RedRibbonHalf For Information, please call InnerAct Alliance at (863) 802-0777

G OV E R N M E N T E M P L OY E E S AT WO R K

Meet Margaret Orozco Meet Margaret Orozco, Firefighter Paramedic who has been a member of the Lakeland Fire Department for 10 years. Orozco said, “I use to do a lot of clerical work but the desire to help people inspired me to become a firefighter. It can be challenging but it is a very rewarding career.” She attended the Orlando Fire Academy and received her Emergency Medical Technician and Fire Standards in 2002. Orozco was hired by the Lakeland Fire Department in 2003 and she received her Paramedic certification in 2007. She is currently working on her Bachelor of Nursing degree at USF. Orozco is a native of Colombia and she has lived in the United States for the past 15 years. She first moved to Orlando from Bogota, Colombia and firefighting brought her to Lakeland. When asked about what she likes most about her job, she said, “I like the fact that every time I go out on a call it’s different and my career is not driven by bottom line profit, it’s driven by helping others.” Orozco added, “As a firefighter, I usually arrive when someone is experiencing the worst part of their day and I get to help make it better.”

Orozco is small in stature but she has a very big heart and she likes giving back to the community outside of fighting fires. She is heavily involved in the Children’s Burn Foundation of Florida and she assists the group during Camp Tequesta that takes place in Umatilla. “Every year the Burn Foundation puts on a camp for children who are burn victims and they come from all over the state for a four day camp. I act as a mentor and work with the kids during camp,” Orozco said. “The camp is a great place for the kids to make friends with people who have similar experiences and it helps with the mental healing process.” Because of her work with Camp Tequesta, Orozco was chosen by the International Association of Fire Fighters to assist in their international burn victim camp in Washington, DC. Orozco said her favorite meal is Bandeja Paisa which is a traditional Colombian dish comprised of white rice, red beans, plantains, ground beef, a corn patty and fried pork skin garnished with avocado slices. However, she quickly said, “Sushi and Tai food are tied for a very close second.” She enjoys running

and going to the beach when she is not working at the Lakeland Fire Department. She said, “The longest I’ve run in a race is 15K a few years ago but I plan to run in the upcoming Red Ribbon Half Marathon in November.” Orozco makes an annual pilgrimage to the mountains each year to go snowboarding and she said Vail, Colorado is her favorite spot. Orozco enjoys reading suspense thrillers - she lists her favorite authors as Dean Koontz and Robin Cook. Her favorite color is royal blue and her favorite television show is Criminal Minds. It is evident that Orozco truly enjoys her job and when asked about one of her most memorable moments she said, “I’ll always remember the day during my rookie year that a citizen came back to the fire station and personally thanked us months after we assisted her during her time of need. My calling is to help others and it is very rewarding when people come up to me in when I’m in uniform and thank me for what I do.”


CITY OF LAKELAND MUNICIPAL

LAKELAND ECONOMY CONTINUES TO GROW

In December of 2012, Forbes Magazine listed the Lakeland MSA (Metropolitan Statistical Area) in the top 15 areas in the nation for job growth in 2013. The national employment survey completed by the Manpower Group stated that the Lakeland MSA is estimated to increase job growth by 14%. Recently, Draken International announced expansion and SteriPack announced that its new US facility would be in Lakeland. These two companies represent some of the latest industries to call Lakeland "home."

Draken International

In April of 2013, Draken International signed a 10-year lease to occupy 90,000 square feet of hanger space adjacent to the 30,000 square feet that they already occupied at the Lakeland Linder Regional Airport. As part of this expansion, Draken International will create 55 new jobs paying an average wage greater than 115% of Polk County’s annual average. Draken will also invest nearly $6.7 million over the next three years as it expands its headquarters and maintenance, repair and overhaul operations (MRO) in Lakeland. Draken International provides airborne adversary support, flight training, threat simulation and electronic warfare support for the U.S. Military and Department of Defense as well as maintenance services and research into new technologies for the industry. With over 50 jets, Draken International operates the largest fleet of privately owned tactical aircraft in the world.

SteriPack

SteriPack, a leading manufacturer of flexible medical packaging has selected Lakeland for their first U.S. operation. Located within Lakeland’s Parkway Corporate Center, SteriPack plans to hire 65 new employees paying an average wage greater than 115% of the average annual wage in Polk County. Their $7 million dollar capital investment will afford them room for future growth as their operation supports additional contract packaging and manufacturing opportunities. With plants in Ireland, Poland and Malaysia, Steripack considered several other locations in the U.S. before eventually choosing Lakeland for its experienced labor pool and existing medical device companies. As of June of 2013, SteriPack had already hired 30 full-time employees.

CITY OFFICES WILL BE CLOSED For The Observance of Veterans Day Monday, November 11 NO SOLID WASTE COLLECTION CHANGE

Thanksgiving: Thursday, November 28 Friday, November 29

NO SOLID WASTE COLLECTION ON 11/28. COLLECTION WILL BE ONE DAY LATER FOR THE REMAINDER OF THE WEEK.

2013 ELECTION

GET OUT AND

VOTE! NOVEMBER 5 General Election

ONLINE www.lakelandgov.net

IN PERSON City Hall is open 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Monday-Friday PUBLIC MEETINGS City Commission and Utility Committee meetings occur the first and third Monday of every month. The public is invited to attend or watch live on

DECEMBER 3 Runoff Election

EARLY WALK-IN VOTING OCTOBER 21 - NOVEMBER 2, 2013 at the Lakeland Branch Courthouse and Supervisor of Elections Headquarters, Mon-Fri 8:30 a.m. – 6 p.m. and Sat 9 a.m.- 3 p.m.

on i t a r b e l

VETERANS DAY

Ce

STAY CONNECTED

Saturday, November 9, 2013 ºMemorial Ceremony at Veterans Park • 10AM ºParade to Munn Park ºVeterans Day Festival in the Park

L O G O N. T U N E I N. G E T C O N N E C T E D.

www.lakelandgov.net

Channel 615 (Brighthouse) or Channel 43 (Verizon FiOS) CITY COMMISSION 9:00 a.m. UTILITY COMMITTEE 1:00 p.m. IMPORTANT NUMBERS City Hall 863.834.6000 Lakeland Electric Customer Service 863.834.9535 Power or Water Outages 863.834.4248 Stormwater Hotline 863.834.3300 PAYING YOUR UTILITY BILL ONLINE www.lakelandelectric.com BY PHONE 863.834.9535 IN PERSON Lakeland Electric has partnered with over 50 local businesses including area AMSCOT offices to accept your utility payment.


October 2013 - Access Lakeland