Utility accounts are required to provide service for the operation of remediation systems and may include electric, natural gas, water, sanitary sewer, telephone (for telemetry systems) and propane. Typically, only electric accounts are set up by the Site Manager for direct payment by the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP). Direct payment by DEP for sanitary sewer accounts should be established only if the sewer and electric are billed together by the same utility. Sanitary sewer, water and propane, if billed separate from the electric utility account, should generally be handled directly by the Contractor with the estimated cost included in the Schedule of Pay Items (SPI)/Purchase Order and adjustments made by Change Order based on the actual bills paid. Telephone accounts for telemetry purposes are included in the System Operations and Maintenance (O&M) Packages and thus not paid directly by DEP or reimbursed to the ATC separately.
For those utilities that DEP will pay directly, the Site Manager should establish the account(s) at the time the RAC Purchase Order is issued by sending the Utility Account Establishment Authorization Letter (Local Program version) to the utility company with copies to the Contractor, property owner, and PRP Accounting at (PRP_ACCOUNTING@floridadep.gov), who will enter the account information in STCM. The site manager must also upload a copy of the letter into OCULUS. Please verify that the Facility ID is correct in both address locations on the Utility Establishment Letter to prevent incorrect information on the billing. Utility accounts established for direct payment by DEP are exempt from state taxes. A copy of the DEP Certificate of Tax Exemption should be included in the paperwork for account setup. Also, most utility companies will waive the deposit for those accounts being paid directly by DEP and may occasionally request DEP’s Federal Employer Identification Number (FEIN) number (59-6007353) for this purpose. The Contractor should provide the information for the establishment of the account, including the specific technical power service requirements such as voltage, amperage and phase (single or three-phase), and these requirements should be attached to the utility account establishment authorization letter. The power company may charge additional fees to upgrade the power service to meet technical requirements and, depending on the circumstances, these costs can either be paid as part of the direct billing of the account to DEP or authorized in a Purchase Order for payment by the Contractor.
Florida Power & Light (FPL)
For establishment of FPL utility accounts, the Utility Account Establishment Authorization letter with the DEP Certification of Tax Exemption must be emailed to T.Planas.cas@FPL.com along with a map depicting the proposed new meter location. If the meter is already in place and only a new account needs to be set up, let her know that in the email body and indicate the existing meter location on the map.
It is the Site Manager’s responsibility to cancel the account when it is no longer needed, by sending the Utility Account Cancellation Letter (Local Program version) to the utility company and copy PRP Accounting at (PRP_ACCOUNTING@floridadep.gov), then uploading the letter into OCULUS. Failure to cancel accounts results in DEP paying for service that is not necessary. If the cleanup activities are temporarily suspended, but not complete, Contractors and Site Managers are encouraged to ask the utility provider if there is an option for a temporary disconnect of service rather than cancellation of the account. The fees are often less expensive, and it is much easier and faster to re-connect service rather than re-establish a new account.
Accounts for Cost Share Sites
Utility accounts for all sites with cost share agreements including AC, PCPP and some SRFA sites should be set up and paid for by the Contractor rather than DEP because there is no mechanism to recover expenditures from the property owner/responsible party under the PRP and the utilities cannot split the bill between multiple parties. In these cases, the estimated cost for utilities should be included in the SPI/Purchase Order and adjustments made by Change Order based on the actual bills paid. Some PBC agreements require the Contractor to establish and pay for the utility accounts.
Some utilities require DEP to execute a contract before they will provide service. DEP can generally enter into these contracts, but the Site Manager is not delegated the authority to sign these contracts on behalf of DEP. All such contracts must be signed by the PRP Administrator.
Utility account payments are processed by the PRP Accounting section and forwarded to Finance and Accounting (F&A) for payment. The utility information can be viewed in STCM on the Utilities page or Historical Payment page. The Site Manager must review this information monthly to verify that the amount being charged is within the range expected for the remedial system being utilized. If the amount charged appears to be incorrect, then the Site Manager should investigate to determine if DEP is being billed incorrectly or if there is a problem with the system. If there is a problem with the account, then the Site Manager should notify the PRP Accounting to work with the utility company to correct the account. If it is determined that the system may be malfunctioning, the Site Manager should discuss the issue with their Team or Local Program Professional Engineering and contact the ATC in order to make the necessary system repairs or modifications.
Estimate of monthly electric cost based on 10 cents per kilowatt-hour
Most utility providers do not require deposit fees when the state/DEP is the account holder, but some may not be willing to waive them. In such cases when DEP is going to be the account holder, the deposit fee should be included in the SPI/Purchase Order and have the Contractor send the check for the deposit fee to the utility company. Any future deposit refund would be either sent to the account holder (DEP) or applied to the final bill.
Deposit fees for utility accounts that are not set up with DEP as the account holder are not authorized to be included in a Purchase Order because they will not be refunded directly to DEP.
If a remediation system was previously operated by another party, it will be necessary for the existing utility account to be transferred to DEP for payment. The Contractor should provide the utility information to the Site Manager including the name of the utility company, customer service contact, company address, telephone number, account number, account address and any special requirements (e.g., three‑phase versus single‑phase electrical service). The Site Manager is responsible for transferring the utility account(s). The Site Manager is responsible for sending the Utility Account Transfer Authorization Letter (Local Program Version) and DEP Certificate of Tax Exemption to the utility company and copy PRP Accounting (PRP_ACCOUNTING@floridadep.gov),
If the Site is going from a Purchase Order to a PBC agreement, then the utilities are generally transferred to the Contractor for payment. The Site Manager is responsible for coordinating this transfer.
The Florida Department of Environmental Protection is the state’s lead agency for environmental management and stewardship – protecting our air, water and land. The vision of the Florida Department of Environmental Protection is to create strong community partnerships, safeguard Florida’s natural resources and enhance its ecosystems.