Florida's Clean Energy Role
Florida, also known as the “Sunshine State”, is rapidly becoming a state that welcomes clean and renewable energy sources. There are many different types of companies driving this change — from utilities to retailers and developers looking to power their facilities with solar and other renewable resources as they build.
Florida is also attracting solar manufacturers from overseas. In 2018, a large manufacturing company announced plans to start manufacturing solar panels in Jacksonville.
Newly elected Governor Ron DeSantis recently signed an executive order calling for new environmental policies, the appointment of a chief science officer, banning fracking and offshore oil drilling, and creating a resiliency office to prepare coastal cities for sea level rise. In a recent article on energy policy, the Governor said, “I am supportive of programs that will provide Floridians with greater access to affordable, clean energy which will help propel the State to a healthier future.”
In recent years, Florida’s policy makers have been supportive of efforts that take a “business-oriented” approach to encouraging clean energy proliferation in Florida. They have placed items on the ballot to reduce property taxes for consumers and businesses that provide upgrades to their property to include renewable energy. With these recent successes, there are a growing number of legislators who want to see Florida diversify its energy mix.
The website http://cleanjobsflorida.e2.org/ presented a report detailing 14,992 clean energy establishments in Florida, ranking Florida as third for new solar installation and moving Florida into the top 10 states for solar energy generation. The data shows that the clean energy sector is a significant employer in the state, but the market has not reached its full potential. However, the Sunshine State is on the rise.
Conservatives for Clean Energy-Florida worked with the Republican Party of Florida (RPOF) to host a clean energy panel discussion at their quarterly meeting on August 17, 2019. This meeting brought together hundreds of conservative leaders throughout Florida. The program began with a presentation of the 2019 CCE-FL poll results by Jim Hobart of Public Opinion Strategies. Following Jim’s presentation, Congressman Matt Gaetz led a discussion on clean energy progress in the Southeast. Our panelists included North Carolina State Representative John Szoka, South Carolina State Representative Nathan Ballentine, former Florida State Representative George Moraitis Jr., and Geoffrey West, a senior project manager from Florida Power & Light. The panel touched on topics such as emerging energy technologies and innovations, and national security. Congressman Gaetz also touched on federal clean energy issues, during which he highlighted his Green Real Deal resolution and detailed how its goals are firmly aligned with conservative, market-based principles and he also emphasized the importance of using social media to engage on clean energy.
Randy Enwright | Advisor
Randy Enwright is co-founder of the Enwright Rimes Consulting, Inc. Randy founded the Enwright Consulting Group in the fall of 1999 after more than two decades in campaign and political party management. In 2017, as Enwright Consulting was starting its 18th year, Randy and his long-time business partner, Jim Rimes, decided to rename the company Enwright Rimes Consulting, Inc. The firm continues to successfully specialize in governmental affairs, grassroots management, strategic planning, telemarketing, campaigns, and digital communications consulting.
Jim Rimes | Advisor
Jim Rimes is co-founder of Enwirght Rimes Consulting, Inc. After working with Randy at Enwright Consulting Group for the better part of 18 years, Randy and Jim decided to rename the company while still continuing its focus on delivering successful outcomes for its clients. Jim has experience both inside and outside the process. Jim has served as a deputy chief of staff for a Republican Governor, Staff Director in the Florida Senate Majority Office and Executive Director of the Republican Party of Florida. His 23 years of experience in Florida politics bring a unique blend of skills in government, politics, and technology.
Kendall Kelley | State Director
Kendall Kelley attended Florida State University where she began her pursuit of political interested as an intern with then State Representative Matt Gaetz. Upon graduation while in the 2015 legislative session, Kendall joined the Gaetz staff full time. The following year, during the 2016 election cycle, Kendall assisted in Gaetz’s successful campaign for the US House of Representatives as the field director, overseeing the volunteer and voter contact program. Following the election, Kendall joined Congressman Matt Gaetz on his Washington, DC staff. She served as scheduler, legislative assistant and Deputy Chief of Staff. During her time as the Deputy Chief of Staff, Kendall oversaw the office’s legislative initiatives and helped guide the Congressman’s legislative priorities through the chamber. Kendall resides in Tallahassee, FL.