GPW: Self-Tempered Anarchy since 2009

Your GPW Editor-on-Occasion is Petra Fried in the City.
Send us your stories, ideas, and information. Insiders welcome - confidentiality guaranteed.

stories along The Way

Monday, November 22, 2010

DWP Raterpayer watered down by City Council

Presser from the Rudy Martinez for CD 14 campaign follows. Thinking there is more than a note of truth to it, and Martinez actually has enough money to mount an actual campaign rather than just a run for office, which makes the race interesting.


LOS ANGELES, CA (November 20, 2010) – In what proved to be one of the most critical votes the Los Angeles City Council has faced in years, Councilmember Jose Huizar denied Department of Water and Power (DWP) rate payers real accountability over the DWP by casting the decisive vote in favor of a watered-down Charter Amendment instead of the stronger reform measures backed by seven other council members and DWP reform advocates. If approved by voters in the upcoming March 8th municipal elections, the amendment would create a weak and disempowered Office of Public Accountability (OPA) for the DWP.

“This vote provided a bright light between the real reformers and those who support the proposed ballot measure. The final language is disappointing.” said Jack Humphreville via the CityWatch site.

The City Council held a series of public hearings to obtain community feedback on the proposed OPA. Community members were lead to believe that the final language for the ballot measure would include elements of oversight over the finances, management and operations of the DWP.

The current diluted and ambiguous language of the ballot measure reads as follows:

"The role of the OPA shall be to (1) promote efficiency and effectiveness of the department; (2) provide a centralized focus on ratepayer protection and consumer complaints; and (3) provide independent analysis of department actions, particularly as they relate to water and electricity rate actions. The OPA shall advocate against excessive rates and shall provide expert advice on rate actions and strategies which most economically accomplish the City's policy goals and protect the department's long-term interests."

“Jose Huizar chose to place the demands of the Downtown special interests above the interests of the residents of CD 14 and DWP rate payers all over Los Angeles,” said Eric Hacopian lead consultant to Rudy Martinez campaign. “His betrayal will be fully noted on March 8th by Council District voters when the voters are given the opportunity to vote for true reformer like Rudy Martinez who will bring real change to Los Angeles City Hall.”