California’s Gov. Davis responds to Bush energy plan
SACRAMENTO (AP) – Gov. Gray Davis criticized President Bush’s energy plan Thursday, saying the president is allowing energy generators to ”get away with murder.”
The Democratic governor said Bush’s pledge to speed up power plant permits and conserve at federal facilities offers no short-term relief for California’s rolling blackouts and record power bills.
By not doing anything Bush is ”allowing the price gouging energy companies many of whom reside in Texas to get away with murder,” Davis said.
”We are literally in a war with energy companies, many of which reside in Texas,” Davis said. ”Californians wants to know if (Bush) is going to be on their side.”
Davis repeated his plea for the federal government to impose caps on wholesale energy prices that he says have driven the state’s largest investor-owned utility into bankruptcy and two others on the brink of collapse.
”If he wants to be helpful to California, he could send a strong signal that the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission should grant some kind of relief,” he said.
California has been struck by six days of rolling blackouts since January, and officials predict more as temperatures rise this summer. With little notice, the outages have swept through the state snapping off power to homes and businesses from San Francisco to San Diego.
Bush announced his long-term energy plan Thursday in Minneapolis, and he has yet to visit California, the state in the grips of the nation’s worst energy crisis.
But shortly into the speech, Bush warned that California is previewing the power troubles the nation could face if it doesn’t boost its energy supply and cut demand.
”Californians are learning, regrettably, that sometimes when you flick on the light switch, the light does not come on at any price,” Bush said.
He said his 163-page energy plan provides solutions that will help ease the state’s power woes.
”I’m deeply concerned about the impact of blackouts on the daily lives of the good people of the state of California, and my administration is committed to helping California,” Bush said.
Davis agreed that California is likely only the first state to experience a power crisis.
”We’re the first one in line to suffer. We want to look out for the interests of other states that could be affected in a year or two,” he said.
On the Net:
Read the Bush energy plan at http://www.whitehouse.gov
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