PG&E spending millions on Prop 16
March 10, 2010
Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) has already spent $15.5 million of its own money supporting Proposition 16 on the June ballot–and the utility may just spend another $10-$20 million before the election. [Capitol Weekly]
Prop 16, which PG&E is pushing, limits the creation of local electricity districts without the approval of two-thirds of the local voters. All donations in support of the proposition have come from PG&E, including a $9 million check on Feb. 12. In contrast, opponents to Prop 16 have raised about $26,000.
Critics content that passage of the proposition would cripple the ability of local governments to create publicly owned and operated utilities throughout California. They cite an example where cities in Yolo County tried to join the Sacramento Municipal Utilities District. The move was defeated, in part, by an $11 million PG&E campaign.
PG&E counters by arguing there should be rigorous debate by the voters whenever cities consider pouring millions of taxpayer dollars into creating their own utility districts.