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PG&E must pass on costs

Reader Input
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This is in response to Eric Byer’s letter of May 24. Mr. Byer, you are correct that Roseville Electric and SMUD’s rates are lower than PG&E’s rates. But are you aware why Roseville and SMUD’s rates are lower? I would suspect not. First, as a municipality, they do not pay any property taxes, license fees for their vehicles or franchise fees. PG&E pays approximately $170 million in property taxes a year to California counties, not counting the franchise fees paid or license fees for the vehicles. Yes, you do pay for these taxes and fees in the rates you pay, however, here is the question you need to answer. If Placer County or any government agency takes over the power, how will the county replace the revenue that is not being collected from PG&E? They would need to raise taxes or include these costs in the rates to cover the loss. The only thing Proposition 16 will do is assure that the residents in that area are in favor of a government agency spending taxpayers’ money to acquire and operate the energy supply in that area. In addition, that agency would have to explain to the taxpayers how they plan on replacing the lost revenue and the additional costs of acquiring the property. No matter how you feel about PG&E, I felt a little more information regarding why a municipality’s electric rates are lower would be informative. In addition, I feel that any government agency should be required to have a two-thirds vote on any additional spending or raising our taxes. TED SMITH, Rocklin