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The Campaign to Reform the DWP

EDITOR’S NOTE: D-DAY FOR DWP: At 9:30 a.m. Saturday Nov. 21, DWP officials will hold a budget discussion for the community at its downtown headquarters. If you want to stop massive rate increases, end DWP’s role as City Hall’s cash cow bring accountability to your renegade utility, you need to be there. A message showing by the public will send City Hall the message and launch a campaign to reform the DWP.

Some people who have been around City Hall a long time say David Freeman is whacked out on ego and old age. I don’t believe that at all. He’s just as sly and devious as ever.

Here’s some of what the former DWP General Manager, Harbor Commissioner, deputy mayor and current $6,200-a-week interim DWP General Manager had to say last week at the annual VICA Business Conference:

“Somebody has to tell the people the harsh truth that even 10-cent solar power is twice as expensive as five-cent coal so the rates will go up. You can’t have it both ways. You can’t be for green power and opposed to rate increases…

“DWP turns out to be a pretty good punching bag but it’s going to punch back…

“I just want to put into perspective all the belly-aching that’s going on, and the screaming minority. I understand how they feel cause everybody in town is out of work or fearful of being out of work and they are rightfully angry…

“Solar power is cheaper than coal if you look at all the costs of coal.

“I need some help in getting the intelligent, knowledgeable people …to speak up.  you can’t be on the sidelines in this fight…Is this civilization that we have worth saving or not? …

“I just want to bring the discussion about the DWP into perspective. God knows were not perfect, that we can improve, but we’re doing one helluva job for the city of Los Angeles.”

Translated, this means shut your mouths you belly-aching fringe activists or Brian D’Arcy will shut them for you. DWP is going to double your power rates whether you like it or not. The end of the world is coming for you since you don’t have jobs and DWP workers and the city treasury are going to take all you got for themselves  It doesn’t matter whether solar power is cheaper or more expensive, you are going to pay through the teeth for it.

Understand that David Freeman is the prophet of green energy, or more precisely the profiteer from green energy.

He’s never delivered much of it actually in his DWP roles but he and his pals have invested heavily in renewables and have been handsomely rewarded.

He talks a good game but blows so much hot air and smoke, he’s a one-man truth-pollutoin machine.

Before Dick Riordan fired him as DWP GM, he managed to cut deals that squandered hundreds of millions of dollars paying DWP workers to retire and phony solar energy schemes and virtually turned over control of the nation’s largest utility to union boss D’Arcy.

The DWP still has not recovered.

Several billion dollars in ratepayer money has gone into the city general fund, DWP workers have become grossly overpaid with a series of huge pay raises and enriched benefits, offices are grossly overstaffed, work crews under-productive.

The water and power infrastructure has been allowed to deteriorate from lack of investment and proper maintenance. And LA still has the least amount of solar energy of any city in the state despite the mayor’s boast we’re the greenest city in America.

The public may be hurting in hard economic times and
cops and other city workers seeing their pay cut, at least temporarily,
but DWP workers are getting tens of millions of dollars in bonus
payments and guaranteed raises at a time of deflation.

belly-acher and DWP Committee President Jack Humphreville, a prominent
businessman with vast experience in high finance, says this:

DWP confuses low rates with
efficiency. DWP rates are lower because it does not pay taxes; is able
to issue low cost municipal bonds; has a high proportion of coal fired
power; has not funded $7 to $10 billion of deferred maintenance, Internet technology and
retirement obligations…

DWP has been misleading the
public. Its solar outreach had no facts and figures. DWP is awarding an
exclusive, no bid, monopolistic contract to its
inexperienced management and notoriously inefficient IBEW construction
work crews rather than bidding out the work on a fixed price basis to
experienced bonded private contractors using skilled Building Trade
workers. This arrangement will cost Rate Payers an EXTRA $1 to $2
billion, not including the billions in extra interest. 

The ‘belly aching, screaming
minority’ is that Special Interest group known as Rate Payers, who DWP
wants to treat like mushrooms: in the dark with lots of manure.”

can cast the residents and businesses of the city as anti-environment
all he wants but the hard truth is that the only reason LA has so much
dirty power plants and so little clean power is because of people like
Freeman, D’Arcy and the city’s political leadership.

The only
reason the cops and other city workers are not squawking more about the
outrageous contract being giving to DWP workers is they are being told
hundreds of workers will be stashed on the utility’s payroll to avoid
layoffs and the bonanza from massive rate increases will help City Hall
get through its financial crisis and allow them to be made whole for
their “shared sacrifice.”

We all want clean energy as fast as we can get it and at a cost we can afford.

But that’s not going to happen through dirty politics or without fixing the DWP once and for all.

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14 Responses to The Campaign to Reform the DWP

  1. Sandy Sand says:

    Here’s another bit of news for the lying lords of loud at the DWP.
    Solar isn’t the only game in town, just ask Chicago where they have installed far less expensive horizontal wind turbines on building roofs that look like really neat art sculptures.
    Also, on top of the City of Chicago’s part of City Hall they have installed a roof garden, bringing down the amient temperature by 30 degrees as opposed to the half of the roof that belongs to the county and doesn’t have a roof garden.

  2. Anonymous says:

    LA already has wind projects in place over the next few years so your point is a mute point. And Chicago has way more wind than LA does, which is where it gets its nickname from. If they installed turbines on top of city hall they wouldn’t even be spinning 95% of the time and would be a huge waste of money.
    Wind, solar, it’s all expensive as hell compared to coal. The only efficient green technology out there is nuclear, and most people are too scared to consider it.

  3. Anonymous says:

    by city hall, I meant LA city hall

  4. Anonymous says:

    Assuming a best case scenario, as envisioned by the president, the total amount of electricity contributed by solar to the U.S. grid will rise from 1% to 2%.

  5. El Quixotian says:

    Nooo, he didn’t actually say “helluva job” did he?
    At least we know he has a sense of humor.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Ron, why is it when you disagree with someone, you automatically accuse them of being corrupt and a thief. So you think Freeman is wrong about things. Rather than argue your point, you say he is a ‘profiteer’ who has invested heavily in renewables. What proof do you offer?
    Isnt it more accurate to say that Doug Dowie, who orchestrated the massive overbilling at DWP is someone who you consider your best friend and is the one who helped finance this blog.
    Mr kaye, you are hereby accused of using illegal taxpayer money to launch this blog and should be investigated.

  7. James McCuen says:

    The quote from Freeman at VICA: “”I need some help in getting the intelligent, knowledgeable people …to speak up. you can’t be on the sidelines in this fight…Is this civilization that we have worth saving or not? …”
    Has a couple of interesting points:
    A. He is trying to muster up support for his position.
    If Freeman’s ideas are so great, they should stand the test of NATURAL public acceptance through outreach.
    Instead Freeman is trying to push ARTIFICIAL backing of his ideas by “ordering” influential people to go out their and support Freeman’s/DWP’s great ideas.
    B. Stating “Is this civilization that we have worth saving or not? …” is a classic draconian statement that is used by many at the City and gives the public a FALSE choice:
    You only have two choices:
    1. My way and idea on renewable energy.
    2. The end of civilization.
    This is the same ridiculous choice that large developer’s offer – Either you have our great development that is going to provide housing and jobs or you are going to have blight, decay, and unemployment.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Guys. Freeman is a shrewd operative, smooth talker, little humble old man, who means well, wants all of us to get along, till he turns around and he screws you. He was placed in this position in an unholy alliance with the thug. They will sell the DWP and we won`t even be aware it happened. It happened before, and that`s the reason pipes are bursting. Ron. enlighten your readers of the sell out in the early 90s

  9. Chris Rowe says:

    My favorite line:
    “”Solar power is cheaper than coal if you look at all the costs of coal.”
    Please explain to Mr. Freeman how solar cells are Made in China – I believe that he has been there.
    Tell him that they use coal fired plants in China to make solar panels – so there is still a coal investment – just not here. And then we get to polute the air further by shipping them all the way from China to the U.S. Yes, Mr. Freeman – that is a very green – “save the environment” plan.
    And this;” Is this civilization that we have worth saving or not? …”
    Does he really believe that solar is going to save our civilization? I think if he did, he should have gotten us on the ark when he boarded it.

  10. Anonymous says:

    Just read in the Slimes ” Behind closed doors…….” and my head is spinning from Tony`s and his Chief of staff`s spin. Do they believe we are stupid? The Slimes may be, but we can see thru the charade and the b.s. Tony`s typical MO. Making calls to leaders for their opinion. My ass. Yeah, he was all ears when he talked to Caruso. Disgusting. These are the same people who brought us back D.Freeman, who is doing his own spinning, as to why we should loose our houses, so that Tony can claim L.A. is the greenest City in America. It`s a sorry state of affairs for our beloved City.

  11. James O'Sullivan says:

    Everyone. Stop talking and start organizing. Inform everyone you know about what is happening. Anger is building, focus it. Half the City Council is up for election March 2009.

  12. Anonymous says:

    “By James O’Sullivan on November 4, 2009 10:00 AM
    Everyone. Stop talking and start organizing. Inform everyone you know about what is happening. Anger is building, focus it. Half the City Council is up for election March 2009.”
    Did you miss something? We had elections in March 2009. There is one run off election left for CD 2.
    We do have elected officials – including the Assembly, some in Congress, running in 2010. We also have Neighborhood Council elections in 2010.

  13. Philadelphia SEO says:

    Thank you for your help!

  14. Kori Cimiano says:

    Any tips on subscribing to your RSS feed with the Google Chrome browser?.. i keep getting errors on it.

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