Updated at 2:38 p.m.
VERO BEACH – Vero Beach officials met with senior management at Florida Power and Light’s headquarters in Juno Beach Thursday to discuss the possible sale of the city power plant and agreed to continue the talks at a public meeting with the City Council. The two sides determined there is a basis for further discussion about FP&L purchasing the plant and agreed to hold a public meeting with Vero Beach City Council members Tom White, Sabe Abell, Brian Heady and Ken Daige in attendance. A time for that meeting is still to be determined. Vero Beach Mayor Kevin Sawnick said FP&L will make basically the same presentation at the public meeting that he sat through Thursday. “They have completed their initial analysis and want to go forward, but before they do they want to hear from the council and make sure that is what we want to do,” he said. Sawnick said the FP&L representatives did not provide a timeframe for how long it might take to complete the next phase of its analysis, which could include a site visit to look at the power plant. “There is still interest and agreement for a more in-depth analysis of system,” said FP&L spokeswoman Jackie Anderson. “It is a very complex process and we want to make sure it is right for our customers and customers in Vero Beach. The next step is to present the same preliminary financial analysis to the city council and discuss potential next steps after that.” In attendance for the city were Mayor Sawnick, City Manager Jim Gabbard, City Attorney Charlie Vitunac, Acting Electric Utilities Director John Lee, and Finance Director Stephen Maillet. Florida Power & Light was represented by Pam Rauch, vice president of external affairs, Amy Brunjes, FPL external affairs manager for St. Lucie County; and Sam Forrest, vice President of Energy Marketing and Trading and members of his team, who did the preliminary financial analysis. Anderson characterized the 2 1/2 hour meeting as productive, but cautioned it is very early in the process and the two sides are concentrating their efforts in determining “next steps” in conducting the financial analysis. “It definitely was a positive step,” Sawnick said of the meeting. “We are moving in the right direction to decide what is in the best interest of our rate payers.”