Will San Onofre settlement help ratepayers?

Aguirre skeptical

The Office of Ratepayer Advocates, a group within the California Public Utilities Commission that represents ratepayers, has reached an agreement with Southern California Edison and SDG&E, co-owners of the shuttered San Onofre nuclear operation. The agreement should benefit ratepayers — but some ratepayer advocates dispute just how much it will help. Consumer advocates have been complaining bitterly that ratepayers have been charged after the San Onofre nuclear plant closed down in January of 2012. Ratepayers say that shareholders, not ratepayers, should have to pay for mistakes made by Edison and SDG&E. Edison had argued that ratepayers should share some of the costs of decommissioning the reactors.

The settlement agreement has to be approved by the full commission.

In essence, the agreement states that any money collected since February 1, 2012, will be refunded to ratepayers, but Edison will be compensated for power purchased after the start of the outage. The deal is for $1.4 billion less than what was requested by Edison and SDG&E, according to Ray Lutz of the Coalition to Decommission San Onofre. At first glance, the settlement agreement "seems like a reasonable compromise," says Lutz.

However, San Diego attorney Mike Aguirre says, "The settlement leaves ratepayers still paying for part of the defective generators; it requires them to pay for the replacement power. [Edison] officials escape any scrutiny, much less accountability, for a risky scheme to employ steam generators they were on notice might fail."

Related: Wednesday’s News Ticker story by Dave Rice

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This has not been a good week for San Diego Don, with the failures of the Opera and Balboa Park Centennial, then we are told that our politicians are continuing to be allowed to threaten us with out of control water and power rates because of gross criminal negligence by the plutocracy that has overthrown our democracy.

Anon92107: Attorney Mike Aguirre compares this settlement with a bank robbery in which the thieves get to keep part of what they stole. He is having a press conference today at 11:30 a.m. at his office at 501 W. Broadway. Best, Don Bauder

how much money will "filter down" the the rapedpayers ?

Murphyjunk: Although the media are reporting that $1.4 billion will go back to ratepayers, Aguirre says that the sum will be only $256 million. He also says ratepayers are being forced to pay for electricity that San Onofre did not produce. Ratepayers "are being forced to pay for the same electricity twice," says Aguirre.

http://www.sandiegoreader.com/news/20... ===> N☢T

I guess that Utility shareholders already know something that all of us that have followed this since San Onofre started leaking on 01/31/12 don't know, namely that the CPUC will stick the bill for SCE's multibillion debacle on the ratepayers instead of SCE where it belongs since they caused the Debacle!

San Diego ratepayers are going to get stuck because SCE and SDG&E are too powerful for even SoCal MSM and/or 99% of our Politicians to stand up against (even if they wanted to), because the CPUC continues to punish ratepayers with ever increasing rates while they reward these Utilities shareholders with record profits!

It is also important to note that local MSM has been MUM about posting any stories about this multi-billion dollar debacle with the one exception being KPBS which did post a story late last Friday and then took the references to it off their website over the weekend, even though it had more comments than their other "leading" stories, I know because I posted most of them!

Please read the relevant comments posted here: http://www.kpbs.org/news/2014/mar/21/california-utility-talks-over-san-onofre-repair-in/#c28567

Capt D, all those capitalized acronyms and whatever-else are very confusing. MSM??? I think I have figured out that you mean "mainstream media." Please spell everything out (literally) the first time, so that readers can follow your train of thought.

monaghan: You should read the documents published by the CPUC. They are not only filled with acronyms. They are filled with bureaucratese. Best, Don Bauder

CaptD: Wall Street knows that the California utilities have the CPUC in their pockets. Today, the stock of Edison International, parent of Southern California Edison, shot up 2.6%. It was a moderately up day for the market. Very few stocks rose that much.

Aguirre believes that Mike Peevey, head of the CPUC, and a former president of Edison, was behind the deal that punished ratepayers. Technically, he should not have been, because the Office of Ratepayer Advocates was dealing with the utilities, but Aguirre believes he was. Best, Don Bauder

The 30 day comment period will be something to watch since many that expect to get paid by the CPUC for their efforts don't want to make waves because they know all to well what happened to Mike A. after the CPUC ruling about the wildfires...

Because the CPUC is able to pay nothing for "some" experts, it tends to keep too many others silent, hoping for a small win, (for themselves by getting paid), instead of a big win for all ratepayers.

This is another key reason why the CPUC can rule in favor of the Utilities so often, they know that most lawyers (unlike Mike A. who has been wonderful) will not waste their time if they are not going to get paid.

CaptD: Yes, the denying of intervenor fees to Aguirre was the CPUC's way of saying, "We only want intervenors who bow and scrape to us." The denial will scare the pants off of other intervenors -- but not Aguirre. He is still fighting. Remember, he won the case in which he was denied compensation. The CPUC is arrogant and thoroughly corrupt in its byzantine procedures. Some day, ratepayers will rebel sufficiently to toss the bums out. Best, Don Bauder

Adding to the other comments is the frustration caused by the ongoing delay in the CPUC's own investigation into the operation of San Onofre. By NOT demanding that SCE make public any and all documentation relating to the design, construction and operation of SCE's in-housed designed replacement steam generators, outside experts cannot determine the "reasonableness" of what SCE did.

This is THE key factor in determining how much the CPUC will determine that SoCal ratepayers are due in refunds for this multiple billion dollar public utility debacle which will amount to somewhere between 1 and 10 Billion dollars if the investigation is provided fair access! The CPUC must allow access to documentation and not continue to shield SCE's actions from public scrutiny if ratepayers are ever to learn the truth!

Unless the CPUC changes it Pro Utility stance, SoCal ratepayers not Utility shareholders will be forced to pay for SCE's in-house engineering debacle for decades to come!

As of now, we have paid and/or are still paying about*:

  • $60 million (PER MONTH) for ongoing expenses and getting zero energy for it

  • $750 million for the replacement steam generators that were dangerous

  • $300 million for new turbines

  • $200 million for new reactor heads

  • $500 million of decommissioning shortfall, estimated...

  • $1,500 million for 5+ decades of nuclear waste on-site storage costs

*NOTE: This is only a partial listing and I believe it is on the LOW side...

CaptD: Of course ratepayers, and not utility shareholders, will be forced to pay for Edison's engineering debacle for decades to come. No argument there. Best, Don Bauder

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