Editor’s Note: Listen to the Measure B today on KPCC’s Air Talk with Larry Mantle as Councilman Bill Rosendahl and I debate how to get solar energy in L.A. at the best price in the fastest time. Click on Air Talk or click here (airtalk.mp3 ).
We’re in the final days of a long political campaign that has seen community activists from Neighborhood Councils, residents groups, business and labor come together to try to defeat Measure B so we can finally get a solar energy — and not more hot air from City Hall and the DWP.
Even the mayor’s own polls show us within striking distance of pulling off a stunning upset to stop a phony proposal that is nothing more than a blank check to the people who have failed to deliver on promise after promise to deliver green energy and good jobs to Los Angeles.
They know their campaign is in trouble against all odds since there is nearly 100 percent support for solar energy but nearly everyone who actually listens to a discussion of their pie-in-the-sky promises and hears what’s wrong with Measure B as process and policy comes to the same conclusion: Let’s go back to the drawing boards and come up with a better plan than the drawn up in back room deals by insiders who only want to serve their own interests.
Measure B has become the hot button issue of this campaign because it is so seriously flawed that its supporters have only one argument: Solar energy at any price.
The truth is the solar industry, unions, business, the community and everyone else with a stake in the city’s future could come up with a better clean energy program well before the June 3 deadline the DWP has if Measure B passes to actually develop the plan it should have developed years ago.
Larry Mantle on KPCC’s Air Talk revisited the Measure B debate today inviting Brian D’Arcy who heads the DWP’s union, the IBEW, but he backed out. Councilman Bill Rosendahl who ardently supported Measure B, then decided he wasn’t sure and then decided he was for it again, took his place and discussed the issue with me but hung up early for what he said was important business in the City Council chamber. Listen to the show here (airtalk.mp3).
And here’s the Top 10 Reasons to Vote NO on Measure B from the VoteNoMeasureB website:
10) The success of Measure B depends on tax credits and depreciation
schemes that were “listed” by the IRS on October of ’08. In other
words, the plan’s success depends on “tax shelters” that are hardly
attractive to billion dollar investors.
number of DWP customers having their utilities disconnected for failure
to pay is at an all-time high. These are tough times economically for
everybody. Can we afford rate increases?
commissioned the Huron report, (favorable to Measure B) while
dismissing the PA Consulting report (unfavorable to Measure B) all the
while ignoring their own DWP report that supports the unfavorable
findings of the PA Consulting report.
Suggestions that a multi-billion dollar program can be implemented with
only a $1 a month impact on the average customer requires us to accept
that the $20 million a year would somehow service the debt. This is
simply bad math.
6) The DWP’s most recent hiring
authorization resulted in 1000 jobs of which 76% remain unfilled. If
the DWP has so many open spots, why the suggestion that Measure B is
necessary for the creation of good jobs? It appears they have
difficulty filling the current openings.
5) With 5
other solar-certified unions standing by and ready to work, the
exclusive relationship with one union hardly seems like the most cost
effective approach to maintaining a competitive labor expense for the
4) Suggestions by DWP management
that Measure B is necessary in order to lock in the plan through
transitions in City leadership are contradicted by reality. Measure B
actually allows the City Council to make revisions to the plan without
coming back to the people of Los Angeles. City Charter be damned!
Measure B does absolutely nothing to replace any of the fossil fuel
power generation plants now operating and any claims that Measure B
will reduce the air pollution in Los Angeles are simply false.
33 Neighborhood Councils stand in opposition to Measure B and are
joined by the LA County Republicans, the Progressive Democrats,
Chambers of Commerce, Unions, City Leadership and Political Candidates
and our City’s Watchdog, Controller Laura Chick who says “I will be
voting NO on Measure B, because I think the entire process of how it
ended up on the ballot stinks. I don’t think it’s been done in an open
and understandable, much less thoughtful, way.”
1) Measure B is a 3 Billion Dollar Boondoggle!