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.
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
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.
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.