Davis to reveal power contract details

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Davis to reveal power contract details State’s long-term deals total $42.8 billion over 10 years

By Alexa Haussler The Associated Press June 13th, 2001

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------- After fighting off demands for information for months, Gov. Gray Davis plans to release this week the much-sought details of 38 long-term contracts between the state and power generators, aides said Tuesday.

At issue are details of contracts with 18 companies, worth $42.8 billion over the next 10 years, Davis administration officials said. Republican lawmakers and several news organizations, including The Associated Press, sued Davis in March, saying his refusal to release the contracts’ details violates the California Public Records Act.

Still, Davis refused, saying that revealing the details would put the state at a competitive disadvantage in other contract talks.

The state has bought power since January for customers of three cash-strapped utilities. Much of that has been on the expensive spot market, although the state has more long-term contracts in recent weeks.

Davis aides also said details will be released this week about the state’s spot market power buys in January.

Raymond Hart, Department of Water Resources deputy director, wrote power generators Monday saying the department will ask a judge today to throw out a confidentiality provision in the contracts.

Oklahoma-based Williams Energy, one of the generators with a state contract, opposes the release of the contract details, a spokeswoman said.

Senate leader John Burton, D-San Francisco, said lawmakers need to see the details of the contracts before they could approve the governor’s plan to rescue Southern California Edison, or any alternate plan.

Burton also said Tuesday he’ll introduce three energy-related measures in the Legislature -- including one that would repeal a 10 percent rate hike scheduled to take effect next year.


-- Martin Thompson (mthom1927@aol.com), June 13, 2001

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