While it isn’t news that FPL pens legislation that is friendly to their own bottom line, it’s appalling to see that Republican Florida House Majority Leader Ray Rodrigues is doing their bidding.
The same companies that spent millions to sway public opinion against pro-solar energy ballot initiatives during the 2016 election also gave Rep. Rodrigues $17,000 before he introduced a bill to potentially hamper the now ballot-approved solar initiative. These shenanigans call into question the origin of two other pro-FPL bills in the House that would allow FPL to charge customers for speculative wildcatting in Oklahoma and to build power lines in South Florida against the wishes of local officials.
At a time when Speaker Corcoran is battling in Tallahassee to reform the culture of cronyism and corporate welfare, his right-hand man seems involved in what looks like a pay-to-play scheme. It’s clear that if House leadership really wants to reform the system, they should start by censuring Rep. Rodrigues for this affair with FPL. Even the perception of a misdeed can derail a bold agenda like Speaker Corcoran’s, and it’s clear that all taxpayers lose when these pro-industry bills have the blessing of a key leader like Rep. Rodrigues.
Michael Uria, Miami