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Tarrant Legislators Deliver Electricity Legislation to Consumers

by: Todd Hill

Sun May 31, 2009 at 09:39 AM CDT

Senator Wendy Davis and Representative Chris Turner won passage of Senate Bill 1468 and House Bill 995, by amendment, which requires utility companies to notify Texas consumers in a timely fashion that their contracts are set to expire.  This notification will give consumers plenty of time to shop around for the lowest possible utility rates and avoid rate hikes at unexpected times--particularly during the expensive summer months here in the Lone Star State.

Passage of this legislation are seen as key campaign victories for Davis and Turner, who campaigned rigorously in House District 96 and Senate District 10 respectively throughout Tarrant County articulating the problems and identifying potential solutions for escalating utility costs to Texas consumers.

From Senator Davis:

"It has been an uphill battle with some powerful interests, but we succeeded in passing legislation that will have a very real, very positive impact on Texas families and their pocketbooks," Senator Wendy Davis said. "This is a common-sense measure that will give people an opportunity to shop around and secure the best electricity rates available, taking advantage of the competition among electricity retailers."

From Representative Turner:

"This legislation is a major victory for Texas families. It will provide more transparency for consumers by preventing unexpected, dramatic utility rate hikes," said State Representative Chris Turner. "I applaud Senator Wendy Davis for her hard work in getting these provisions into the bill and for her strong leadership on consumer issues."

Tarrant County is not only proud of Davis and Turner, but Representatives Veasey, Pierson, and Burnam as well.  You each represented our county, and your districts, well throughout the 81st legislative session.


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What's with the Matt Angle puffery (0.00 / 0)
There was a time when Texas Democrats stood for something, notably common carriage regulation. That was our finest hour.

A bill that allows the coal-fired electricty monopoly to give notice of when they will "charge whatever the traffic will bear" based, mainly, on credit-score, i.e. discriminatory pricing, is ... eyewash.

The big story in this legislature is that an ignoramus named Toby More panicked Democrats into thinking they would lose seven Texas House seats if Voter ID passed.

Well, the effect of Voter ID, if any, can be easily overcome. What cannot be undone is the legislation -- for instance, unemployment insurance -- that the GOP can now claim Democrats ran out the clock on.

Guess what BOR: Karl Rove is not as smart as he thinks he is, but Matt Angle is a lot stupider than you realize he is.

Democrats are in the minority and, so, have a tough row to hoe, sans doubt. But, they were not just played this year, they were ... served!


eh?? (0.00 / 0)
once again you baffle the BOR.

wtf are you talking about?

why are you trashing matt angle? what is it that you have done to help elect democrats?????

Please refer to KT's signature.

[ Parent ]
ditto (0.00 / 0)
I have no effing clue what that dude is talking about.

[ Parent ]
Smart not learned (0.00 / 0)
Baffling the BOR does not seem to be hard, since the level of both historical and economic ignorance is quite high relative to that which serious Democrats should have.

I am talking about common carriage regulation which is (a) the only uniquely popular and progressive achievement of the Texas Democratic Party, albeit almost a century ago, and (b) the key to restoring this party to majority status in Austin based on energy policy and regulation of insurance, public utilities, and so on ...

To the specific comparison of myself -- a grass-roots party "activist", as we are condescendingly referred to by mercenary pimp-consultants -- I was but one of about a thousand of such Democrats in Harris County who followed a very different approach to political campaigns than that which was dogma for the DSCC/DCCC under Martin Frost as well as the anti-Dean, Clintonite party establishment.

This doctrine is is considered infallible by Matt Angle and his his acolytes at BOR.

But, the "swamp and sweep" approach to our campaign in Harris Count succeeded where the TDP/LSP failed, again, statewide and wasted its money -- actually its lame direct-mail -- in the few legislative races it targeted in Harris County.

But, let's be clear about this: The people who ran this party into the ground in 1994, congratulate themselves for their catastrophic failures in 2002, and take unearned credit for progress in 2004 and since are an obstacle to success in 2010.  

The way a real party -- as distinct from a sycophantic, cornpone patronage-chain works -- is that there are no wizards to credit for a victory.

But, there are rewards: I was elected committeeman in 2008 on the promise to "go to Austin not to kiss ass, but to kick butt" as well as in recognition of my command of technical matters necessary to the conduct of an open and fair convention.

Otherwise, I am an old, grumpy white guy with severly limited social skills, but I was elected from a very mixed SD because I was the Obama supporter with three young, black, female "whips" and my hapless opponent had nothing going for him but stupid party rules and the patronage of our decrepit party leadership.

This is called "a message". It does not seem to resonage in Austin, but that is your problem, not mine.

[ Parent ]
This electric rate legislation... (0.00 / 0)
is a step in the right direction but it won't bring us the same electric rates charged to consumers in adjoining states like Oklahoma and Arkansas.

The public wants to know all the facts about why we have paid so much more, and appear to have 'political' electric rates in Texas.

Let's go back and research the testimony before committees of the Legislature that brought us these higher rates, and focus on solutions in the upcoming race for Governor.


Agreed (0.00 / 0)
I think you are spot on, Tom.  This legislation is a step in the right direction but it is not a solution to the overall problem.  

I know there were some very good proposed solutions by means of legislation that died in committee or never got a vote.  That's a shame.  

Hopefully the dual legislation on the part of Davis and Turner is a greater movement in the right direction.  

I also agree in pushing for solutions in the gubernatorial elections coming up.  When I interviewed Tom Schieffer this was one of the things I made a point to ask him about was escalating costs of utilities in Texas.  We should all make a concerted effort to ask these questions.


"You must be the change you wish to see in the world." - Mahatma Gandhi

[ Parent ]
Research the political contributions (0.00 / 0)
Pete Laney delivered the TDP to the "de-regulators" in the 75th Legislature.

They "bailed out" improvident public utilities that should have been forced into bankruptcy and re-organized the way GM and Chrysler are being handled now. They effectively repealed common carriage regulation so that public utilities in Texas could "compete" ("charge whatever the traffic will bear")with the cable television monopoly franchises ("tie-in sales") and the merchant power generators (Dynegy) or gamesmen (Enron). Now, Texas has (a) the lowest marginal cost of power production, (b) the highest average revenue from power sales, and (c) Soviet-like technological obsolescence coupled with (d) the very exemplar of a "Predator State".  

The GOP has certainly made all that worse, but the TDP has failed again and again, especially in 2002, to offer any credible alternative at all. That will continue to be the case as long as the princple the TDP follows is whatever deal maximization of corporate funding of the Austin consultants by the usual bi-partisan concession-tenders plus a few trial-lawyers and on declining faction of organized labor entails.

Consumers, innovators, farmers, workers, you name it ... we all need a party, a platform, and some distinctive princples, not a lobby, a gaggle of pimnp-consultants, and silly, shallow buzz-words any two-bit bunko or con-artist can come up with.

Why? Well, the era of cheap land, cheap oil, and cheap credit is over. We need a popular, center-left party -- like we had a century ago only more inclusive. We really do not need more of the reactionary, cringing liberals who seek to restore ... the status quo ante 2002. Yes, it was better then. But, ... the moral, mental, and physical planes of strategy do not work that way. The GOP, for all their public hysterics, know that.

They understand strategic games like "chicken". It is clear that the TDP/LSP and their cheerleaders at BOR do not.    

[ Parent ]
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