News Release

TECO Energy pledges million-dollar matching gift challenge to benefit Tampa Bay History Center, Cultural Arts District

TAMPA, September 6, 2001

TECO Energy today announced a $1-million matching gift for the development of a new Tampa Bay History Center. The gift will be paid as a match against gifts made by other corporations, as well as the public.

TECO Energy Chairman and CEO Robert Fagan said, "Clearly, we believe in the importance of the Tampa Bay History Center as a central part of the downtown Cultural Arts District. As the Center is the only local institution solely devoted to studying, exhibiting and sharing Tampa Bay's rich, 473-year history, we feel it is important to support this valuable community resource."

Half of TECO Energy's gift is contingent upon the Hillsborough County Commission maintaining the full amount of its 1998 commitment of $17 million to build a permanent museum facility for the Tampa Bay History Center.

Fagan reinforced that this gift from TECO Energy is just one part of the funds needed to develop a new Center. "We are hopeful that the County Commission will join us in expanding the broad positive impact of this important local institution," he said.

Tampa Electric President John Ramil, a lifelong resident of Tampa, grew up before there was such a facility, and appreciates what the Center offers to the community, and to students.

"Even something as simple as a research project on Tampa Bay history was nearly impossible before the Tampa Bay History Center. The Center increasingly publishes the books and provides the materials that make it possible for thousands of Hillsborough County students to learn about our region," said Ramil. "And now it's time to build on this success and expand the Center's reach."

In fact, top educators in the area have also expressed support for building a new Tampa Bay History Center facility, including Hillsborough County Schools Superintendent Earl Lennard; Hillsborough Community College President Gwendolyn Stephenson; University of Tampa President Ronald Vaughn; and University of South Florida President Judy Genshaft.

The Center has also received endorsements from businesses and individuals throughout the Tampa Bay area. This pledge to the Center is another example of TECO Energy's longstanding commitment to the Tampa Bay community. Through its Foundation, the company has supported Tampa's Historic Streetcar System, the Tampa Bay Performing Arts Center, Nature's Classroom, and Metropolitan Ministries, as well as The University of Tampa and University of South Florida and many other worthwhile organizations.

TECO Energy (NYSE:TE) is a diversified, energy-related holding company headquartered in Tampa. Its principal businesses are Tampa Electric, Peoples Gas, TECO Power Services, TECO Transport, TECO Coal, TECO Coalbed Methane, TECO Propane Ventures and TECO Solutions.