Tag Archives: PG&E rate increase

Governor Jerry Brown accepted $50,000 from PG&E for his 2010 gubernatorial campaign, another $25,000 in 2012

23 Oct

NOTE (10/27/14): As far as I can tell, this letter below that I sent to the Enterprise Record two weeks ago has never been published. My guess is, Little didn’t like the way I treated Debbie Presson. Little isn’t a journalist, he’s a corporate shill. He isn’t interested in running a community forum, he’s too busy trying to run the community. Good bye Enterprise Record, I wish I could say “It’s been nice!”, but instead I’ll say, “With friends like you, who needs enemas?”

Election time again, and Dave Little is sitting on the letters section of the newspaper like a dog in a manger. Instead of expanding the letters section at this time, he narrows the passage, only lets in letters that he feels are directly related to the election. So, this letter I sent 10 days ago is still waiting to hit print. I think it’s okay if I run it here, since it will only be in the paper about 24 hours anyway.  I’m afraid people have already forgotten the PG&E rate increase.  

I’d like to see Brown get voted out in two weeks but I know that’s an ice cube’s chance in Hell. So, you might want to write to him and ask him why he accepted that kind of money from PG&E and then appointed their employees to the Public Utilities Commission. Ask him about the communications between his office and PG&E during the San Bruno hearings.

Those commissioners, by the way, make over $100,000 a year – the judge who literally sat on our hearing makes about $112,000 with another $30,000 in benefits. Remind Jerry Brown, the average California taxpayer makes  just a little over $40,000/year. 

The CPUC hearing regarding the PG&E rate “changes” was very enlightening.  Judge Jeanne McKinney explained, PG&E will not see an increase in revenues, instead, they will “change the way revenues are collected.” She spelled it out very clearly –  lower users will pay more,  higher users will pay less. This action was made possible by the state legislature with passage of AB 327. 

Twelve speakers at the 2:00 session pointed out,  the CPUC is supposed to encourage conservation of energy, but this plan encourages higher usage. Worse, as Julian Zener pointed out,  lower users are usually those who can’t afford to use more. The burden of higher rates falls disproportionately on the poor, while the wealthy who can afford to use more electricity will be rewarded with lower rates.  At the same time they are decreasing the CARE discount by 25 percent. 

The CPUC is currently embroiled in a scandal involving inappropriate negotiations with PG&E in the aftermath of the San Bruno explosion. E-mails released by PG&E last week show the governor’s office was also involved.  PG&E gave Governor Jerry Brown $50,000 for his 2010 campaign and another $25,000 for his 2012 campaign to raise sales tax.

We need to change the way the CPUC operates. Currently, the governor fills this board with employees from the utility companies. Please join Chico Taxpayers Association, help change this statewide spoils commission to a network of boards elected and accountable locally. 

Juanita Sumner, Chico Ca


Casey Aplanalp: something is wrong here

20 Oct

Chico Taxpayer Casey Aplanalp has been pretty busy in his day job but pays attention to the issues that matter – thanks Casey for this letter sent to the Enterprise Record:

PG&E tells us to conserve energy. So as an incentive, they’re posing to increase the rates for lower tier energy users and lower rates for top energy users. It’s a slap in the face to those who conserve, and screws people who have gone solar, but makes perfect sense in opposite world.

They hold a Town Hall type of “discussion” and are presumptuous to allow people to speak for 2 minutes, as if we need their permission to speak out. This is their manner of gathering public consent, holding a boring meeting nobody wants to attend.
They hand-picked the PUC judge to preside, who is/was a lawyer for an energy company. Not exactly what we need to see from the PUC. Private companies don’t get to hire their own judges, and the Feds will see if this judge has indeed taken compensation from PG&E.

This reminds me of drought season, when water users got dinged for conserving water.

Something is wrong here.

I also wrote a letter to the ER but of course it’s caught in the election letter jam, we’ll see if it gets printed. I complained about the fact that Jerry Brown takes tens of thousands in campaign contributions from PG&E, then turns around and appoints their employees to the CPUC, turning a deaf ear to such practices as “judge shopping.” The Moonbeam has got to GO! This is one race where I will hold my nose and vote for Neel Kashkarian. He’s bad too, mark my words, I’ll be bitching about him too. But we have to snap the power vacuum grip they’ve got every once in a while, shake things up – that’s our only shot in the state races, shake things up and see what we get. 

Unfortunately if we toss our dice in the city council election all we get are snake eyes.

Democracy is not a spectator sport!

10 Oct

Well, I feel like an American – I just returned about an hour ago from the CPUC hearing on the PG&E rate hike proposal. I feel like an American with a lap full of bullshit.

What did I tell you about these judges? Here we find ourselves with one Jeanne McKinney, Administrative Law Judge, flanked by a court reporter on the one hand, another man who ran the slide show, and a giant bald headed muscle man who was there to enforce the time limit.  

Pick out the security guy.

Pick out the security guy.  He turned out to be a big pussy cat, obviously intimidated by righteous old people.

Judge McKinney introduced herself with this explanation: “My black robes show my commitment to upholding the law…”   She went on to explain the proceedings. The time limit would be two minutes  (even though there weren’t that many speakers signed up).  She promised, “I will not interrupt you,” adding, “everybody should be careful not to interrupt or speak over each other…”  I don’t know if this comes from her training in mediation, or if she’s been to a few hearings where the public has got obstreperous, but she seemed prepared for a riot, being real sweet but firm, like a kindergarten teacher with license to paddle.

I was real impressed with the turn-out, on a workday afternoon, including people who’d driven from as far away as Taylorsville. There was a delegation from the Sutter County Taxpayers Association. I didn’t get to count the attendants, but I’d estimate at least 30 concerned citizens, ratepayers, business and home owners. These weren’t angry protesters, like those who who  came to the hearing in San Francisco last week.


But they were concerned, very anxious, and several of them besides me even angry about the rate “changes” proposed by PG&E.  All of them agreed that the proposal was, as one woman put it, “a slap in the face,” to those of us who’d tried to conserve.

The big news  to me was the announcement, not included in the notice I received in my bill, that these new rates would mean, “high usage customers may see their bills go down and low usage customers may see their bills go up.”  Read that again – I thought it was a typo, but as if butter wouldn’t melt in her mouth, the judge read that line several times from the handout.  Our assembly passed a bill behind our backs, “lifting the cap on lower-tier rates…”  And here they come, like Prince John and the Sheriff of Nottingham, to rip off the poor to give cheaper rates to the rich.

What outraged me – and several other speakers mentioned this too – in the handout, which the judge of course read to us almost verbatim, it  says the CPUC’s “Core Principles for Rate Design Proposals” are supposed to “encourage conservation and energy efficiency…”  As Julian Zener, former member of the Chico Sustainability Task Force, pointed out, “this [change] actually incentivizes heavy use…”  He pointed out the social inequity of such a move – social equity was supposed to be a component of the city ‘s Sustainability program, but I sure as hell didn’t see any other members of the STF at the hearing. Maybe they’ll show up tonight at the 6:30 hearing,  and report back to me?

There were other outrages – the spin of this whole thing, the confusing language, the baldfaced contradictions – we really should have been circling that building with signs, we shouldn’t have participated. We should have blocked the driveway and stopped the hearing.  Again we have handed them our tacit consent – all they need is for us to show up at the hearing, so they can say they did their legal diligence in telling us about the hike. 

But, I wanted to vent, and I hoped to see others vent as well. I was not disappointed. Patricia Miller from Sutter County Taxpayers Association was the first speaker – right away I could feel my balls swelling up.  Miller reminded us, one of the rate increase notices we’d received in our bills over the last couple of years was to pay for the fines and infrastructural repairs in the wake of the San Bruno explosion.


A $1.4 billion fine – handed off to the ratepayers. Miller objected to that, and asked if we ratepayers would also be on the hook for the recent fine given to PG&E for “judge shopping” for these farcical hearings. Here’s the latest article I found – PG&E and CPUC are getting a colonoscopy from the FEDS!


I sure hope so anyway. This whole PG&E scam really needs to be investigated. There’s no accountability when the judge’s “prior experience includes serving as senior counsel to an independent energy producer and handling business disputes and transactions at two San Francisco law firms.”  I love the spin – that’s just a round-the-corral-don’t-step-in-bullshit way of saying “lawyer for a energy utility.” I can’t believe they don’t have to be straighter about that, and tell us which one. This woman didn’t deserve the respect we gave her, that facetious speech about her black robes – Jeanne, honey, you should be working under a red light.  

Miller’s husband Chuck stood up next – he poked at the judge, asking her questions about the “green” energy plans Jerry Brown has put in place – have they gone anywhere? He already knew the answer – NO! But the judge just repeated that she was not there to answer questions about PG&E, just the “proceedings“.   Miller was right to bring it up – Governor Brown has mandated  33% of power be generated by “green” sources, and that has raised our rates with no real results. We’re still on the grid, we’re still paying for power shipped in from who-knows-where at what “real cost.” Judge politely answered that she couldn’t answer his questions.

Even with the outrages we were hearing, people continued to be polite. The third speaker, Paul Sullivan from Chico, complained that “raising prices on the low users – people who struggle to pay $150 bill – we feel that would be detrimental…”

Speaker after speaker complained that the new rates would be onerous for the poor.

Speaker after speaker complained that the new rates would be onerous for the poor.

Bill Brattigan came all the way from Taylorsville to attend. He joked that rate increases are good for him, he owns a solar business! Solar is getting cheaper, he says. He says, changing the tiered structure to give lower prices to the high users is hardly going to motivate people to go onto solar. He’s right – the new tier structure will reward high users, and punish low users. So why would anybody make the switch to solar? Furthermore, PG&E screws solar users – they give them 4 cents a kilowatt hour and then sell that for 35 – 50 cents. 

Several speakers complained that the pricing changes  would not be conducive to conservation, which is a core principal of the CPUC.

Several speakers complained that the pricing changes would not be conducive to conservation, which is a core principal of the CPUC.

I’m sorry, I didn’t catch the name of the next speaker, an 88 year old woman from Oroville, who complained that rates just keep going up, without explanation. When her bills for herself and her disabled vet son started climbing over $500 a month, folks at PG&E set her up on the CARE program – which currently cuts your bill by about 44 %.  But a few years later, they raised the maximum income, and she became ineligible, and “the bills started coming in again…”  She made a point that a couple of others had made – when they bought their house, years and years ago, they were told that they would  be paying some fees to set up infrastructure. But this woman says she’s seen housing fill in all around her, the infrastructure has been built and running for years, but those charges have not disappeared from her bills. I’ve seen many notices in which they say the charges will only last for a year and a half maybe – but my bill never goes down.  

Whose bill has gone down? Anybody?

Then this lady really dropped a bombshell – she was nervous by this point, they had  the red digital clock on the front table, ticking down the time. This lady used to work for Butte County Assessor’s office, she lived here in the 1950’s when Oroville Dam was built. She reported that the Dept. of Water Resources was talked into building all of PG&E’s infrastructure, it’s all on public property, and they pay no property taxes on this property that generates out power.  She said the assessor (gave no name) was upset that the property would be taken off the tax rolls. We all pay taxes on our homes, but PG&E pays no taxes on the property with which they generate billions of dollars a year. 

She left the podium telling everybody she’d only recently started reading “these little slips of paper” that come with her bill. Wow, did she feel taken, and encouraged everybody to be more vigilant. Thank you very much 88 year old lady, you kick ass. 

I was glad to see Julian Zener and Grace Marvin appear. Those two have really brought up some nuisance bullshit before Chico City Council – Zener was a member of Ann Schwab’s Sustainability Task Force, by which the city gave PG&E a golden ticket to screw  every resident of this town, in exchange for a $400,000 grant that was parceled out to members of the task force. I’m so sick of this corruption Downtown, I was surprise to see these two stand  up on their hind legs and bitch out PG&E. Zener pointed out the “discrepancy” between the CPUC’s stated goal of conservation and their new “rate changes”, as well as the social inequity of charging poor people more for energy than rich people. Then he pointed out a “discrepancy” between what PG&E will tell you on the phone and what they say on their website, regarding the details on solar power pricing. 

Grace Marvin described her efforts, time and expense that went into an energy analysis of her home, the lengths she has gone to to save money, the “thousands” she spent installing solar power – all for naught. Her family got WRAM’d as soon as the savings started rolling in. Remember WRAM is how they collect more money off you if you don’t use enough energy. “This doesn’t make sense,” she said, “it’s like a slap in the face.”   I must agree with her.

Mary Laprad came up to remind everybody that PG&E is a business. Businesses should roll expnses into their business operations, not pass them onto their customers. She described the rate increase notices as “continual. People who try to conserve are perennially hit with rate increases…”  If you pay attention to your bills, you see she’s right.

Beef farmer Marv Freeman (who may be a relative of mine, I will have to look him up) stood up to say PG&E drove him out of the dairy business, and now they charge him a $200 a month fee for each pump he runs to water his grass and his steers. Like me, Marv can’t just pass his expenses on to his customers, he just has to swallow these bills and go on. I can’t raise my rents just because my bills go up, and Marv can’t get more for his beef, his customers will walk away along with my tenants. He really summed it up good – “PG&E is too big to go broke, but I’m not…

Another man who came from the Sutter area was Robert MacLared. He was very nice, but reminded the judge, “No request from PG&E ever gets turned down…”  He also complained that changing the tiered rate would discourage conservation – “rates just keep going up.”

Then a local mobile home park owner, Larry Elliot, stood up in his work clothes, obviously a busy man. He had  humdinger of a problem – he has to pay his tenants’ PG&E bills, because it’s one big hook-up. He is not eligible for CARE, but has to give CARE rates to his tenants. So he is subsidizing his tenants’ power. Of course he can turn around and collect it back in their rent . Think about that Dummass, and get back to me – you can only squeeze so much out of people who can’t afford to live anywhere but a trailer park. So, they’re lowering the CARE payment from 44 to 32 percent – WHOA somebody has tied NELLY to the tracks! 

The notice I got said they were lowering CARE, but didn’t say how much.  The handout we received  said it would go from 44 to 32 percent. I think they will also close the orphanage and send a couple dozen old  ladies to a work house. 

That was the end of the public comment. The judge had kept her promise – even when speakers, including myself, went overtime, she didn’t say anything. I’m proud to say, I was the first speaker to shove that two minutes bullshit right back up her ass, and  I just ignored Mr. Ape (who was never introduced so I had to make a name for him) when he tried to eyebrow me off the podium.  After I sat down, the judge sent him out of the room to get this big red card that said “Time Up”. But the other speakers just ignored him when he’d hold it up. Almost everybody went over two minutes. 

But the hearing was  still over in under an  hour. What nerve she had to limit our comments like that, a whore of Babylon like her. I told her I wasn’t too happy about paying her pension, either, and she just sat there like she was getting an enema.

While I did see a few familiar faces, I didn’t  see one councilor or council candidate, I didn’t see my county supervisor, or any of our “local leaders.” I saw true leaders – if the public will lead, the leaders will follow.

As we were leaving I recognized former city council candidate, Chico businessman Ali Sarsour. Mr. Sarsour is a regular attendee at a lot of meetings, but he keeps his tongue. I have no idea what he is thinking, I wish he would speak up, I think he knows a lot of stuff. As we left the parking lot I noticed the bumper sticker on his car, “Democracy is not a spectator sport”. 






Did you know that PG&E is allowed to pick the CPUC judge that hears their rate case application?

8 Oct

According to an article by Ellen Knickmeyer of Associated Press (10/7/14), “A PG&E representative acknowledged communicating with top commission officials to pick the judge for a PG&E rate case.”  After revelations of  other “back-channel dealings between utility executives and officials of California’s Public Utilities Commission,”  a judge is being asked to bar all private contracts between utility companies and their regulators. 

Well, for Pete’s sake – it’s about freaking time! 

Knickmeyer reports “In the hearing before a state administrative law judge, rate-payer groups and others criticized both PG&E and the utilities board for secret communications,”  after a PG&E representative actually admitted “communicating” with top commission officials to pick the judge for a PG&E rate case.  

As the kids say today, “OMG!” Put another “!” on that. And a double “G” ! ! 

These people are dirty, sheesh, the stuff they pull. They enrich themselves at our expense, they collaborate to steal from us!  That’s racketeering. And, that’s nobody’s fault but our own.  How many of you have written those letters/e-mails I been asking you to write? Get on it! Be sure to reference this storyThese people need a torch to their bottoms – that’s OUR JOB! 

 At last the local media seems to have come alive – I read this story in the Chico Enterprise Record. I don’t know if it was intentionally picked off the wire, or just by accident, but at last our local media is telling us something important.

Here’s the whole story:


I’ll remind you all again, that rate increase hearing is tomorrow at Holiday Inn, two sessions at 2 and 6:30 pm. I might print a copy of this story and wave it at them. Should I ask if any of them were “shopped” by PG&E? Will any of you be there to back me up? 



Take a look at the city’s PG&E bills

2 Oct
This is just part of the city's monthly PG&E bill - the grand total for the month of

This is one of two checks made out monthly to PG&E by the city of Chico.

Check #2 - for one month of PG&E the city of Chico lays out about $160,000.

Check #2 – for one month of PG&E the city of Chico lays out about $160,000.

I don’t know how many times I’ve sat in meetings Downtown, shivering cold. No matter what time of year, the air conditioning in that building seems to be running full-tilt boogie.  I can’t stand refrigeration, I get over cold, then over hot, it’s hard to sit still and concentrate. When I paid a visit to the city building recently, I noticed everybody in there was dressed as if for Winter, wearing sweaters over long-sleeve shirts. I realize, they want to look business-like, but I think they can do that in less clothes. Having to pay this kind of money to air condition the management types who insist on three piece suits in July is an onerous burden for the taxpayer. Get a pair of Bermuda shorts Chris and Mark! 

When I read the rate increase proposal from PG&E I couldn’t help but wonder what that would mean to the city of Chico. I finally decided to take my own personal time and go down to the city to view the utility bills. I knew it would be high – there’s not just lights and ac for the big building Downtown, the city owns properties and little office buildings all over town. They also pay for street lights and electricity for irrigating all those community green ways and the stupid  medians and sidewalk greenery along public streets. So, it really adds up.  The grand total for the period from August 14 to September 14 is over $160,000. 

Now, the irrigation and some of the lights are paid for by “assessment districts” – homeowners are assessed for this maintenance in their property tax bills.  

This list shows the funds from which the money is taken to pay the amounts in the bills. I think some of these accounts are homeowner assessment districts.

This list shows the funds from which the money is taken to pay the amounts in the bills. I think some of these accounts are homeowner assessment districts.  This is just one page I found, there were others.

It’s not a very big portion of this bill though. Most of this bill is for electricity used in city owned buildings.

Yes, I think the city wastes a lot of electricity. I think they have way too many lights and computer stations running for no good purpose. Also, since they laid off so many employees, they have a big empty building Downtown that is still sucking a lot of juice. One suggestion I’d make is close the third floor and shut off the power up there. 

When Ann Schwab  formed the Sustainability Task Force, she said the first priority would be too look over city properties and see where the belt could be tightened. Frankly, I don’t even think she found a belt. I think Mark Stemen needs to get his priorities in order. Stop messing around in our private business, and turn that butt-candle to the city of Chico. Don’t even talk to me about roof tiles until you’ve reduced the city’s electricity usage Mark – I want a 20 percent decrease before this latest PG&E rate hike kicks in. 

One month's electricity to run the sewer plant.

One month’s electricity to run the sewer plant.  This is only a fraction of the sewer budget – most is made up of salaries, benefits and pensions – check the city budget.

I can't find any explanation on this bill, see any address here?   Over $2200 for what? And over $2300 last month. I smell air conditioning.

$2200 a month for lights and air conditioning at the animal shelter. Again, this pales in comparison to the salaries and benefits in that budget. 

Almost $100 a month to light a sign at DeGarmo Park.

Almost $100 a month to light a sign at DeGarmo Park.

This is what it costs to run a traffic signal for a month.

This is what it costs to run a traffic signal for a month.

I took pictures of page after page, not all of them – one bill was 158 pages long – but whatever caught my interest. 

$254/month to keep lights on at the Stansbury Home?

$254/month to keep lights on at the Stansbury Home?  That’s more than twice the bill my family had in our 1800 sf home, and we lived there 24 hours a day.

This is still part of that $122,000 bill - look at the details - over $300 for "gas procurement"?  What the hell?

This is still part of that $122,000 bill – look at the details – over $300 for “gas procurement”? What the hell?


One other conclusion I’ll draw from looking at these bills – the  rate increase is going to hurt the city. They’re going to use it to try and stick us for some sort of tax. 

Well, off to work. 



Snidely Whiplash in “PG&E rate increase – let’s foil it again!”

26 Sep

Still growling over PG&E’s pending rate increase proposal, I got a nice note from City Council  candidate Forough Molina today. I had sent out a note to city council candidates as well as sitting councilors, and county supervisors, asking for their help in publicizing and maybe strategizing for  CPUC hearings scheduled October 9, 2 and 6:30 pm.

So far I’ve only had responses from District 3 Super Maureen Kirk, candidate Rodney Willis, and today candidate Molina. Kirk and Willis were interested in hearing what others had to say, and I’ll try to keep them in the conversation. Molina expressed her frustration as a ratepayer, echoing everyone else’s complaint – we are all so busy with our jobs, kids, etc, how do we stay on top of this stuff?

Ditto here. I tried to get a meeting together, but found the library room is very booked, they didn’t have any openings that fit my schedule. So here we are, at our virtual meeting place. Let’s get our bananas together for that hearing.

We can rant, we can rave – they like that, it’s easier to write us off as idiots. I was reading a letter to the Board of Supervisors from Cal Water rep Pete Bonacich, in which he totally downplays the recent Cal Water rate hike. “...the typical customer using an average of 14,960 gallons of water per month (20 Ccf) will see water utility charges of $40.94 in 2014…  The “typical” customer? Who is the “typical” customer?

I realized when I read that letter – we should have all done the math, taken our bills and figured out exactly what the Cal Water rate increase would mean to us, and then,  with a full head of steam, really let our elected officials, as well as our CPUC officials, know a little more vividly how we felt about  that. I find, I never really get mad-mad, until I have the numbers waved in my face.  Bitch-slap me with a utility bill, and I’m raring to go to a hearing.

So, there’s your homework assignment Kids, I’ll work on my bills too, we’ll do some scenarios for our PG&E rate hike, and see what we come up with. 

Ha, ha – joke’s on me – I notice in my new bill for period 8/20/2014 through 9/18/2014, they’ve changed the rates! Damn that Snidely Whiplash, we got to foil his next caper, before he has us all so corn-fused, we don’t know which end of the hose the pie is coming out of.


Thanks Maureen Kirk, Bill Connelly – but where are the rest of our “leaders” on this PG&E rate increase?

22 Sep

I am really disappointed in the lack of response I’ve had from our elected and wannabee elected officials over PG&E’s proposed rate hike.  I have heard from Maureen Kirk, Bill Connelly and Rodney Willis, and that’s it.

I can only assume that Scott Gruendl and Mark Sorensen and the rest of council are well aware that as rates go up the city’s Utility Tax revenues will go up right along with them.  UT is one of our top revenues. This city doesn’t produce anything – like a leech, it just attaches itself  to the flesh of the taxpayers, and SUCKS!

I don’t know what the other supervisors are thinking, but I appreciate Kirk and Connelly at least having the decency to respond. And Willis seems to be the only candidate who sees the opportunity to do something real for the community, too bad. 

The candidates aren’t talking about any real issues. Some of them say they want to fund more positions in the cop shop, but only Willis will talk about how.  They’ll put “At Least He Was Honest” on his political tombstone. Nobody else has the nerve to touch the tax maggot. But I’ll predict now – as soon as the dirt settles from this election, they’ll trot out their sales tax increase, with Gruendl and Sorensen driving the bandwagon.  Or maybe they’ll go for a bond – if those two win, they will consider it a solid gold mandate from “the people,” and there will be no stopping them.

So, we just got a 19 percent water rate increase, and Cal Water has already informed us they have another rate increase proposal coming in 2015. Our electric rates trickle up steadily by a variety of means, as I’ve explained, and now PG&E wants to effectively double them. Statewide lemmings voted to raise our sales tax two years ago, and now cities up and  down the state are tacking another quarter to full cent onto every dollar their taxpayers spend.

Bad consumer, stop spending so much money!” is what I’m hearing, and I’m listening! I just ordered all our winter underwear and socks on Amazon.com, thankyouverymuch.  And I just got another order of household  goods like soap and toothpaste from Lucky Vitamin.  I’m just doing what my local officials are telling me to do – stop spending money. The prices are waaaaay cheaper than local stores, and here’s the cherry on top – the sales taxes I pay never get within 50 miles of Chico. 

Until I see more community spirit out of Chico City Council, I will continue to spend elsewhere. I don’t have to go online.  It’s fun to holiday shop in Oroville, they have a lot of grocery stores and gas stations too. Red Bluff is a great Christmas shopping town, big sidewalks, lots of ginchee locally owned shops. 

So, I sent the following letter to the ER, asking our “leaders” for more help with this PG&E rate hike. I honestly do believe that the letters written by the supervisors had some effect, when taken in with all the protests from people around the state. I’m asking you to jump in too, write those e-mails – check my previous post for addresses. We can beat this rate increase, at least beat it down a little.


PG&E is making proposals that may double our electric bills. The Public Utilities Commission will convene public hearings in Chico at the Holiday Inn, on October 9, at 2:00 and 6:30 pm.  

PG&E currently uses a complicated system of pricing tiers. As we use more electricity the price increases, at first only by a penny per kilowatt hour, but at “Tier 3”, the price jumps from 15 to 31 cents per kwh. At Tier 4, 35 cents. In alternate months, without explanation, Tier 1 is reduced by about 50 kwh for the last week and a half. 
They are proposing the elimination of Tiers 3 and 4, “merging” them into Tier 2. They don’t give specifics, but I’m afraid this means, the Tier 2 price will double.  They also want to double the flat service charge from $4.50 to $10 by 2016, with annual “consumer price index” increases.  
I have contacted Chico City Council members, council candidates and county supervisors, asking them to protest this increase on behalf of their constituents. I believe the letters our Board of Supervisors wrote to the CPUC helped to reduce Cal Water’s requested 38 percent rate increase to 19 percent. 
I hope you will join Chico Taxpayers Association in asking our elected leaders to get involved. And, please attend one or the other timed hearing on October 9 to voice your opposition to PG&E’s rate increase.