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Commission Urges Cuomo to Privatize LIPA

Monday, January 07, 2013

Long Island Power Authority, LIPA Long Island Power Authority (Stephen Nessen/WNYC)

A New York state commission is calling on the governor and legislature to privatize the Long Island Power Authority.

The so-called Moreland Commission made the recommendation Monday at a briefing to Governor Andrew Cuomo. The governor formed the commission weeks after Sandy — a storm that left two million customers without power.

The commission's task was to figure out fixes to New York electric utility regulations and more specifically to find a way to reform LIPA.

The commission released its preliminary findings after less than two months of frenzied work.

"The commission found very clearly that the only option is for a fundamental change," commission co-chairman Benjamin Lawsky told the governor. "It's for a complete overhaul of LIPA and how power is delivered on Long Island."

Lawsky and the commission provided no specifics on how such a monumental change would work. LIPA has nearly $7 billion in rated debt and past studies have found privatizing the authority would raise rates for Long Island customers who already pay among the highest electric bills in the country.

Cuomo did not say if he would support privatizing LIPA. He said he will address the issue during his State of the State speech Wednesday. Cuomo did however say LIPA "never made sense operationally."

And he thanked the commission for giving his administration "exactly what we wanted."

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Comments [1]

bad,bad idea. Telco service has gone downhill since Landline Verizon combines the cell and land line, and they make a lot more money with the cell division, since there is no infrastructure compassed to landlines, which is manholes,underground conduit runs, buried cable , telephone poles outside Manhattan , so many thousands of miles of copper cable that is hard to maintain. Verizon is selling off the land line portions of their company in many areas of upstate NY, i believe they won the court battles to sell it .Now you call a smaller company with a lot less money for infrastructure maintained. Their main priority is making money, Verizon was too, It is a Texas based company, that just wanted the money making portions and wanted to sell off the hard to service areas that are scarcely populated, Which is everything north of the Tappan Zee bridge .
Public utilities should not be privatized, Their profit should be a fixed ratio like it was in the old days. When the dollar is more important to service, which happened with Verizon , it is very dangerous for the consumers, which is everybody ,including the high levels of government, police , fire ,emergency services.
What they need in the State of New York is a strong PSC that knows the telco BSP's ( Bell System Practices) and inspects and makes sure the work is up to standards. The BSP's standards have kept cables placed in the 1930's still working fine today. The splices and craftsmanship are a work of art. The Managers came up through the ranks and were excellent craftspeople. Verizon came up with the idea that the managers did not need to know the job, they just needed to manage people
Today you have managers that when watching the people work remind me of dogs watching "this old house" on TV.
They know something is going on,their head moves back and forth, but that is about it. the tiles could be placed backwards, Nice polished ceramic side being cemented and placed on the wall, with the grooved side facing the kitchen and they wouldn't know it was wrong.
Give The PSC some power and get some of the very knowledgeable retired craftspeople with 25 plus years experience in the plant they are inspecting.
Oh, I am not looking for work, but i hate to see some excellent craftspeople with all their knowledge go to waste. The telcos retired all the old timers , so no one to train and work with the new people like the journeyman-apprentice days. Also keep the penalty for kickbacks and brides very severe.

Jan. 08 2013 04:42 PM

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