Contacts:        Thalia González
Senior Legal Counsel
510-926-4002 / thaliag@greenlining.org
Matthew Haney
Legal Associate
510-926-4014 / matthewh@greenlining.org


LAST PUBLIC HEARING on Edison’s Three Billion Dollar Rate Hike BEINg HELD IN COMPTON AFTER COMMUNITY demands respect

Berkeley, CA – The California Public Utilities Commission is holding the last in its series of public hearings after numerous community members demanded the opportunity to be heard publically on their concerns regarding Southern California Edison’s application $2.898 billion dollar in increased revenue during a recession.   

Many Edison ratepayers and community leaders have questioned the timing and necessity of this rate increase.  For example, on April 29, 2008 in Santa Ana community leader Reverend De Leon testified, “Our families are making difficult choices during this time.  We have families that have lost their home, now moving into a home where there are already one or two families.  The food prices, the gas prices, some of these families are finding it very difficult to get to work and keep their families fed.” And on April 28, 2008 in Long Beach Edison ratepayer and community member Lynn Dangtu’s testified that, “It is absurd to learn that Edison is asking for rate increase that will result in $2.9 billion in additional revenues, while the companies’ top four executives combined earn $22 million annually.”

Many community groups, including Mabuhay Alliance, FALCON, the Inland Empire Latino Coalition, and the Greenlining Institute oppose the rate hike, for the following reasons:

Californians Can Not Afford Such an Increase

  • Given the recession and housing crisis in California and nation, along with rising inflation and unemployment, customers simply cannot afford pay more for electricity.
  • Statewide unemployment hit 6.2% in March, the highest level in almost four years, and prices for staple household purchases like gasoline and food continue to rise dramatically.

Southern California Edison Uses Customer Dollars to Overpay Their Executives

  • In 2007, Edison International paid CEO John Bryson 11.7 million dollars – this number does not include his $65 million dollar retirement package.
  • At least 30 Southern California Edison executives received pay of $1 million or more; at least 300 received pay of $200,000 or more; and at least 5632 received pay of $100,000 or more.  Few of these employees have credentials or duties that justify such high salaries.

Edison Is Not Investing Their Corporate Dollars in California’s Underserved Communities

  • Among California’s three largest energy utilities, Southern California Edison appears to be last in percentage of pre-tax income devoted to philanthropy, with less than 1%.
  • In 2006, Southern California Edison’s total philanthropic investment in Latino, Asian American, and African American communities combined amounted to about $2.4 million for 21.5 million people or about $0.12 per person.
Where: COMPTON CITY HALL CHAMBERS, 205. S. WILLOWBROOK AVE., COMPTON, CA 90220
When: MONDAY, JUNE 30, 2008 AT 7 PM