Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, who campaigned four years ago as someone who would stand up for Department of Water and Power ratepayers, is pushing a proposal to give six raises within five years to more than 9,000 workers at the utility.
The salary agreement, backed Tuesday by Garcetti’s appointees on the DWP board, would provide raises of least 13.2% and as much as 22.3% by October 2021, depending on inflation. Beyond that, the pact would deliver a 4% boost over two years to the base pay of hundreds of DWP electrical distribution mechanics, also known as linemen.
California energy regulators say the state could benefit from sharing more electricity with its neighbors during heat waves such as this week’s, but a proposal to do so has stalled after the election of President Trump. . . . “We will reduce costs for everybody. We will reduce pollution. We will improve system reliability, and these are all reasons to do this,” says Cavanagh. Last August, Gov. Jerry Brown wrote to leadership in the Legislature that he would look to pass a proposal earlier this year. “I have directed my staff, the Energy Commission, the Public Utilities Commission and the California Air Resources Board to continue working with the Legislature,” Brown wrote. “The goal is to develop a strong proposal that the Legislature can consider in January.” That still hasn’t happened, although the governor has maintained he still supports regionalization.
In November last year, the European Commission’s Clean Energy Package proposed a 30 percent energy efficiency target for 2030. . . This was, as it turns out, wishful thinking, at least in this Council. Several Member States are pushing for even weaker targets. A vote on this is expected for next Monday. In particular, proposals are being prepared to water down the provisions in Article 7 of the Energy Efficiency Directive (EED), which delivers about half of the entire savings of the Directive and is a key driver for energy efficiency in Europe.
. . . If accepted, these proposals will reduce the current ambition levels by more than 80 percent and perhaps as much as 100 percent depending on the amount of excess savings and how Member States apply these proposed terms.
The average nationwide gasoline price on Friday was the lowest for this point of the year since 2005, according to GasBuddy, a website and smartphone app designed to help drivers find the best deals at the pump. . . The average driver in South Carolina could fill up for $2.02 a gallon on Friday, compared with $3.06 in California and Hawaii, according to AAA. The Western states are seeing the biggest increases from last year, because of rising demand by drivers and unplanned maintenance of local refineries. Drivers in New Jersey are paying 23 cents a gallon more than a year ago because of an increase in gasoline taxes.
How much does it really cost Californians to use renewable energy, and who’s going to pay for it? That’s the question raised by Southern California Edison’s proposed rate hike of nearly 13 percent.
The list of people who are upset about the increase includes the members of the International Union of Operating Engineers, Local 12. “SCE’s habit of raising rates on its ratepayers indiscriminately has to stop,” wrote union official Ronald J. Sikorski in a letter to the California Public Utilities Commission. “Working families can’t afford it and neither can seniors on fixed incomes.”
But Edison says the money is needed to upgrade its infrastructure to handle the many demands of California policies, like mandates for 50 percent renewable power by 2030, and a goal of 1.5 million plug-in electric vehicles on the road by 2025 (up from about 285,000 now).