Florida Water Services closes on sale of Marco Island and Deltona Systems

Florida Water Services Corp. has received about $145 million from the communities of Marco Island and Deltona for the sale of Florida Water's water and wastewater systems in those areas.


DULUTH, Minn., Nov. 6, 2003 -- ALLETE Inc. announced that its subsidiary, Florida Water Services Corp., received approximately $145 million from the communities of Marco Island and Deltona for the sale under threat of condemnation of Florida Water's water and wastewater systems serving those communities in Florida.

Florida Water Services has been in the process of selling its assets. Approximately 90 percent of Florida Water assets have been sold or are under contract to be sold for $442 million, which represents an after-tax gain to Florida Water, net of all selling and transaction costs, of about $85 million.

To date, the expected net cash proceeds after transaction costs, retirement of most Florida Water debt, and payment of income taxes are approximately $260 million. Net proceeds from the sale will be used to retire debt at ALLETE.

ALLETE's corporate headquarters are located in Duluth, Minnesota. ALLETE's holdings include ADESA, the second largest wholesale vehicle auction network in North America; AFC, the leading provider of independent auto dealer financing; Minnesota Power, a low-cost electric utility that serves some of the largest industrial customers in the United States; and significant real estate holdings in Florida. For more information about ALLETE, visit the company's Web site at www.allete.com.


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