Tomorrow we'll have a full review of last night's meeting. But, late as it is, I thought I would offer up a little insight into the true nature of the person currently serving as our Mayor. While maintaining an aura of concern and empathy might be important to achieving his goals here, when he is engaged in similar work at the Southern California Gas Company, his methods are decidedly more direct.
The following comes from a website run by the Porter Ranch Neighborhood Committee (click here). The document I am quoting from is called Information Concerning Sempra Energy Expansion of the Aliso Canyon Gas Storage Facility. It can be found on the PRNC site (or click here). The topic is the Southern California Gas Company's unfortunate reputation for starting fires in wilderness areas. Needless to say people living in Porter Ranch, a hazardous fire area not unlike our own, are very concerned about these guys. Here are a few passages from an article that first appeared last April:
Sempra Energy Southern California Gas Company has filed an application to expand the Aliso Canyon Storage Facility and run a new high voltage transmission line from Newhall, over the mountain to the Aliso Canyon facility, right behind our houses, about a quarter mile up the road from the Tampa Ave and Sesnon guard shack.
Los Angeles City and County fire investigations have determined the cause of the Sesnon Wildfire, erupting on the morning of October 13, 2008, to be a downed power line owned by the Southern California Gas Company (SCGC) at their Aliso Canyon facility. Transmission lines that come under the jurisdiction of the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) are governed by brush clearance requirements and are subject to inspections by that body. However, transmission lines that belong to non-electric utilities located on private land, such as the Gas Company's line at the SCGC Aliso facility north of Sesnon, are not regulated by the CPUC, and so are not subject to the same kind of strict clearance and inspection requirements.
Then there is this:
Southern California Gas Company avoidance of safety and maintenance responsibilities at the Aliso facility demonstrates at best a complete lack of understanding of the dangerous nature of their operation, or much worse, a willingness to make trade-offs in operational expenses (brush clearance/line inspection costs) at the expense of neighboring community safety.
Now to say that some large and powerful corporations cut corners when it comes to the well-being of those unfortunate enough to share living space with them is widely understood. And they do have their share of unscrupulous people working for them, folks who will do anything to quash community concerns and defeat any efforts that might get in the way of company profits, no matter what dangers are involved.
A Porter Ranch Stakeholder named Wes Rogers became involved in the campaign to get the Southern California Gas Company to recognize the fire danger they were putting his community in. Among the things he and others were asking is that the SCGC budget for things like brush clearing when constructing and operating their power lines in areas where fires are an extreme danger. So who steps into this troubled picture?
Upon his learning of my filed protest, I was contacted by Joseph M. Mosca, Public Affairs Manager of Southern California Gas Company. He employed a disingenuous strategy to downplay and understate the nature of this new project in hopes that I could be easily placated. Upon my request to see maintenance and safety records and meet with the plant manager, my requests were denied and all communication from SCGC was ended. Is this what SCGC calls public outreach?
Our illustrious Mayor at work. Did you honestly think Joe Mosca ever cared about anything but the interests of those he really works for? Or that he won't do or say anything to get his people what they want, no matter what the consequences? Then you need to talk to the people of Porter Ranch.
One more thing
Was it a coincidence that the City's first water rate postcard and Susan Henderson's op-ed attack piece on the water protest appeared within 48 hours of each other? Is City Hall turning to attack surrogates like Henderson in hopes it will help them get the rate increase done?