A few months ago, I brought to your attention the concerning proposal in California regarding a socialistic approach to electricity pricing based on income. This plan aimed to charge households fixed rates for electricity, irrespective of their actual consumption, with charges varying according to income levels. It was met with understandable outrage from many.
I want to provide an update on the plan and your collective efforts for speaking out. Your pushback has not gone unnoticed. Lawmakers are now considering reversing their decision on this proposal, thanks in no small part to the pressure from concerned citizens like yourselves. Assembly Bill 1999, which would strip away the fixed-rate portion of this plan, has now been proposed. While it’s not yet a done deal, it’s crucial to recognize that our voices are being heard, and our advocacy is making a tangible difference.
For those unfamiliar with this proposal’s specifics, let me offer a brief overview of its key components and potential implications for our community. The proposed fixed-rate bill would establish an income-based charging model for electricity, with households facing predetermined monthly charges based on their income bracket, regardless of actual energy usage.
Here’s a breakdown of what this could mean for San Diegans:
- Households earning between $28,000 to $69,000 would face a monthly charge of $34.
- Those with incomes ranging from $69,000 to $180,000 would see a monthly charge of $73.
- Households earning above $180,000 would encounter a monthly charge of $128.
This model would result in median-income households in San Diego paying $876 annually for electricity, regardless of their actual consumption. Individuals who have invested in residential solar would not be exempt from these fixed charges.
Last month, I had the opportunity to participate in the California Public Utilities Commission public meeting regarding the proposed new fixed-rate electricity plan. It was great to see so many people participate and I know that had an impact on lawmakers reversing course.
As I mentioned earlier, Assembly Bill 1999 looks to remove these charges, which should have never been brought forward in the first place.
While the fight is not over yet, we must continue to stand together and make our voices heard. I urge you to maintain your advocacy efforts and contact your state representatives to express your concerns about this proposal. Together, we can ensure that the interests and needs of our community are prioritized.
Our engagement is making an impact!
San Diego County District 5 Supervisor Jim Desmond