Public Power, Public Forum!

Thursday, September 13th, 2012

A ver exciting forum is coming up September 27 sponsored by the Thurston County League of Women Voters entitled “Public vs. Private Power”. According the the League website “This forum will be a discussion of the pros and cons of the local initiative to establish public power as an additional responsibility of the Thurston PUD“, a reference to Thurston County Proposition No. 1, which is on the ballot November 6 (the complete wording of the ballot measure is “Shall Public Utility District No. 1 of Thurston County construct or acquire electric facilities for the generation, transmission or distribution of electric power?”).

The forum is said to feature two speakers from the private sector and two from the public, but actually only one of the speakers is from the public sector, Thurston County Public Utility Commissioner Jim Lazar. He will run through the numbers and let us know if Public Power is financially feasible in Thurston County. In his other life he’s a Consulting Economist that specializes in utilities; he may have a few relevant comments on the subject of “Public vs. Private Power”. As a PUD Commissioner appointed this summer to replace a resigning Commissioner in District #1 Mr. Lazar‘s term ends when the November election is certified, so the fate of Proposition #1 will not effect his term in office.

Also speaking will be John Pearce from the citizen’s group that gathered signatures to add Proposition No. 1 to the ballot, Thurston Public Power Initiative. Opposing Public Power are Andy Wappler of Puget Sound Energy and Ralph Munro, mouthpiece for the front group funded entirely by our corporate overseers, Alliance to Protect Thurston County.

The “Forum: Public vs. Private Power” event is open to the public. It takes place Thursday, September 27, 7:00 PM at the Washington Center for the Performing Arts in downtown Olympia.

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