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Talk of the bay: Utility executive Richardson dies of cancer at 58

By Times Staff
Published September 28, 2007


Joseph H. Richardson, the former president and CEO of Florida Power Corp., died Thursday after a brief battle with cancer. He was 58. Mr. Richardson joined Florida Power, now Progress Energy Florida, in 1976 as assistant counsel. He left the company a decade later but returned in 1993. He served as president and CEO from 1997 until 2000, when the company was purchased by a North Carolina-based utility, now called Progress Energy. "He really dedicated a lot of time and effort to making sure the company did well," said Vincent Dolan, vice president of external relations with Progress Energy Florida. Mr. Richardson lived in the Atlanta area and worked for Pennsylvania-based Allegheny Energy. He is survived by his wife, Karen, three grown children and their families.

Progress closes on possible nuke site

Progress Energy has closed on the purchase of a $46.6-million, 3,100-acre property for its proposed 1,100-megawatt nuclear power plant in Levy County, north of the Citrus County border, according to Levy County property appraiser records. The property was purchased from Jacksonville-based timber company Rayonier. Cherie Jacobs, Progress Energy spokeswoman, confirmed the purchase but declined to comment on the price. "It is not a decision to build," she said. The site is one of nearly 30 new nuclear plants planned throughout the country. No new U.S. nuclear plant has been built in nearly three decades.

Ch. 8 may produce Ch. 38 newscast

Media General's Tampa station, WFLA-Ch. 8, is in talks to produce a newscast for the area MyNetworkTV affiliate, WTTA-Ch. 38, the first newscast for the station since owner Sinclair Broadcasting shut down its news department in March 2006. WFLA has produced newscasts for other stations before; back in 2000, WFLA created half-hour 7 and 10 p.m. newscasts for Pax TV-owned WXPX-Ch. 17. Currently, Media General stations produce newscasts for other stations in five markets, including Roanoke, Va., and Augusta, Ga. Officials from WTTA and WFLA would not return repeated calls for details on the broadcasts, expected to begin next month. When WTTA launched its 10 p.m. newscast in 2003, officials noted about 30 percent of potential advertising - especially political ads - went only to stations offering newscasts.

[Last modified September 27, 2007, 23:04:48]

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