JEA, MEAG file lawsuits over contract tied to new nuclear units

Florida-based public power utility JEA and the City of Jacksonville, Fla., recently filed a complaint in Florida state court for declaratory judgment regarding a power purchase agreement in place with the Municipal Electric Authority of Georgia (MEAG Power).

The power purchase agreement is tied to the expansion project at Plant Vogtle, a nuclear power generating facility in Georgia.

The complaint was filed in the Fourth Judicial Circuit Court of Florida on Sept. 11, the same day that MEAG Power filed a breach of contract lawsuit against JEA.

MEAG and JEA entered into the power purchase agreement in 2008. The power to be provided under the agreement is to come from two new Plant Vogtle units (Units 3 and 4).

JEA’s complaint for declaratory judgment seeks to clarify the validity of the amended purchase power agreement, which JEA said was never approved by the Jacksonville City Council. JEA and the City of Jacksonville believe the agreement violates the Constitution of the State of Florida and should be declared void and unenforceable.

MEAG Power’s lawsuit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia. MEAG Power said in a press release that its lawsuit would require JEA “to abide by its agreement with MEAG Power.” MEAG Power’s lawsuit states that JEA’s actions have hindered MEAG Power’s ability to fulfill its own contractual obligations and to secure financing.

MEAG Power provides wholesale electricity to 49 member communities in Georgia, who own their local distribution systems. JEA, which is located in Jacksonville, Fla., serves an estimated 458,000 electric customers.