Contracts to supply electricity for 10 years?
----- Original Message -----
From: Gene Cramer
Sent: Saturday, March 10, 2001 12:52 PM
Subject: EnLG 2001mar10 LAWMAKER SAYS HE'LL SUE REVEAL TERMS OF CONTRACTS
LAWMAKER SAYS HE'LL SUE REVEAL TERMS OF CONTRACTS
A California assemblyman said he will sue the state if Gov. Gray Davis doesn't reveal terms of $43 billion in contracts covering the state's purchase of power from more than 20 suppliers.
Orange County REGISTER March 10, 2001
State Assemblyman Tony Strickland, R-Thousand Oaks, said he will file a lawsuit Monday if the state fails to disclose the details of its contracts to buy electricity over 10 years at an average price of $69 a megawatt-hour. Only general terms of the agreements have been revealed. Strickland said he filed a request for disclosure under the Public Records Act on March 1.
"This isn't Gray Davis' personal money," Strickland said. "It's the taxpayers' money."
The state began buying power after the state's biggest electric utilities, Pacific Gas & Electric and Southern California Edison, amassed more than $12 billion in debt by purchasing power for more than they could charge consumers.
Barbara Blinderman, a Los Angeles lawyer who specializes in public disclosure law, said that details of the contracts should be revealed. "I don't know on what grounds a reasonable judge would justify withholding the information," she said.
A Davis spokesman declined to comment.
S. David Freeman, Davis' chief negotiator, told the San Francisco Chronicle that contract details should remain secret because of confidentiality clauses and because negotiations continue. Contracts are divided among three-year, five-year and 10-year agreements, he told the newspaper.
STATE SAYS NEXT POWER BUYS WILL REQUIRE $500 MILLION
The state, which is buying power to keep the lights on during California's electricity crisis, says it needs another $500 million to purchase energy for the next few weeks.
The Davis administration's announcement brings to $3.8 billion the amount allocated for emergency electricity purchases since December.
The state has been buying power on behalf of Southern California Edison Co., Pacific Gas & Electric Co. and San Diego Gas & Electric Co. The utilities have suffered losses because of spiraling wholesale electricity prices.