Former FDEP head Sole lands lobbying gig at with utility giant

10/04/10 Kate Bradshaw
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The man who used to be Florida’s top environmental official will reportedly soon be lobbying his old bosses – on behalf of a utility. Florida Power and Light has hired former Florida Department of Environmental Protection Secretary Mike Sole to be the company’s new vice president of state governmental affairs.

The position involves advocating on behalf of the state’s largest private utility, one that covers about a quarter of the state’s consumers. Former FDEP Secretary Mike Sole would lobby members of the executive branch, except for his old department. Natural Resources Defense Council consultant Susan Glickman says this revolving door policy is nothing new.

She says this is particularly common at Florida Power and Light.

Glickman says the revolving door policy gives companies a strategic advantage, which doesn’t always bode well for consumers or the environment.

Mike Sole was the longest-serving of all Governor Charlie Crist’s appointees, and was the first major department head to leave during Crist’s tenure. He was a prominent player in the Gulf States’ response to the BP oil disaster, and his resignation was effective September tenth. Glickman says Sole is regarded well, and the utility giant he’ll be working for will now have a strong advocate on its side.

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