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The Villages
Wednesday, July 24, 2024

SECO board holds emergency meeting after pole rental uproar in The Villages

The SECO Energy Board of Trustees held an emergency meeting on Thursday as a result of the uproar in The Villages over huge increases for pole rental.

Some community development districts were hit with increases as high as 600 percent for pole rentals which would have cost hundreds of thousands of dollars. Supervisors in CDDs across The Villages were looking at the grim reality of burning through cash reserves to pay the increases coming due Oct. 1 and then looking at maintenance assessment increases for their residents possibly a year from now.

SECO held a closed-door meeting Tuesday with elected supervisors from The Villages at the cooperative’s headquarters in Sumterville to discuss the huge increases.

As a result of pressure from officials in The Villages, SECO trustees met on Thursday and announced they had agreed to “a two-year phased approach to incorporate the pole rental rate increase.” The means 50 percent of the increase will take place Oct. 1 and the second half of the increase on Oct. 1, 2025.

The reactions of supervisors were mixed at meetings Friday of the CDD 1, CDD 2 and CDD 3 boards. Several were still very angry about the unannounced increases that came without warning and questioned SECO’s leadership. Others argued for the need to work cooperatively with SECO.

“I don’t want SECO to think we are just willing to roll over,” said CDD 2 Supervisor Tom Swiers.



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