Oahu: Town Hall Meeting on Electricity Rates

TONIGHT! TOWN HALL MEETING – MAY 29TH 6:00pm – 8:30pm AT EWA MAKAI MIDDLE SCHOOL

91-6291 Kapolei Parkway Ewa Beach, HI 96706 (Click here for map)

WHY ARE OUR ELECTRICITY RATES THE HIGHEST IN THE NATION?

Honolulu City Councilman Tom Berg (District 1; Ewa Beach, Kapolei, Waianae Coast) is hosting a town hall meeting tonight to address skyrocketing electricity rates and will feature guest speaker Ed Wagner, an advocate for changing how electricity is governed in Hawaii.

Wagner, the owner of one of the most energy and water efficient homes in Hawaii, says we need to move forward to a 100% clean energy future in 10 years, not 70% in 20 years and will show the audience how we can achieve that.

“If you have invested in solar power and switched to appliances and light bulbs that are more energy efficient, your energy savings have it where the electric company in response raises rates to make up for that loss in revenue. So for the family that cannot afford solar power and buy new appliances, they get hit with higher rates compounding the problem. The problem being we have only one place to purchase electricity from, and that is what we will discuss tonight,” stated Tom Berg.

Retired state Senator Fred Hemmings offered this quote for tonight’s
meeting,

“HEI is Hawaii’s most egregious monopoly. It is antithetical to free enterprise to a have a monopoly with a guaranteed profit at the expense of consumers. Our electricity is the nations highest priced hovering around 200% above the national average. HEI has made Hawaii the most dependent state on fossil fuels. HEI utility lines are a blight on the landscape. HEI executives are amongst the highest compensated in Hawaii. HEI invests excess profits in other business including over seas ventures. The solution is to break up the monopoly for the benefit of consumers.”

Berg has introduced resolution 12-62 to get the “fox out of the hen house” as he described it and is confident it will get a hearing before the state legislature reconvenes next year. “Having the highest rates for electricity in the nation is crippling our economic growth and a contributing factor for putting families on government assistance programs. We have to think about ways to benefit the consumer, and resolution 12-62 is a start,” stated Berg.

The resolution proposes support for legislation that would limit the ability of an electric company to own and operate both the means to produce and deliver electricity to the public.

What: Town Hall Meeting on Electricity Rates
When: May 29, 2012
Where: Ewa Makai Middle School
When: 6:00 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.