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Yesterday (July 24), attorney Mike Aguirre filed a suit against governor Jerry Brown, complaining that he may have violated the California Public Records Act by refusing to reveal any communications he had on the termination of a study on the now-shuttered San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station.

The California Public Utilities Commission's Office of Ratepayer Advocates and a so-called utility watchdog, the Utility Reform Network (TURN) reached a settlement in which ratepayers will cough up $3.3 billion even though the closing of San Onofre was caused by Southern California Edison's mismanagement, according to Aguirre, who has been fighting implementation of the agreement.

Last year, the CPUC authorized the hiring of an expert to look into the failure of steam generators at San Onofre. Shortly, that study was called off. The CPUC and Office of Ratepayer Advocates were asked to provide records of any communications they might have had with the governor over the study's termination. They declined to produce the records. So, Aguirre has sued the governor for the information.

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Comments

monaghan July 25, 2014 @ 5:24 p.m.

Funny you should mention this, as Governor Brown -- definitely no friend to Mike Aguirre when he was our embattled City Attorney -- is traveling to Mexico right now with a huge entourage that includes representatives of SEMPRA, the corporate parent of SDG&E.

Brown always likes to sound high-minded and principled, but he is politically sharp, and that's not meant as a compliment. Brown courts and deals with Establishment interests (like the California Teachers Association and SEMPRA) who return the favors at election time. Which happens to be right now, as Governor Brown is running for a historic fourth term in office.

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Don Bauder July 25, 2014 @ 8:55 p.m.

Monaghan: Yes, I posted a blog item on Brown's (and Sempra's) Mexican trip yesterday (Thursday). Sempra is showering money on Brown. The company wants to be sure it gets its money's worth. Best, Don Bauder

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Don Bauder July 25, 2014 @ 8:56 p.m.

Roy W. DeMille: I don't know whether San Onofre could be converted to a desalination plant. Maybe Founder can tell us if it is possible. Best, Don Bauder

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Don Bauder July 26, 2014 @ 6:49 a.m.

Miriam Raftery: So Brown thinks "You have to crush the opposition." That's why he keeps Michael Peevey, blatantly pro-utility and anti-consumer, at the CPUC. I am surprised that an otherwise-circumspect politician made such a stupid statement. Hopefully, it will come back to bite him. Good story, Miriam. Best, Don Bauder

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Anon92107 July 26, 2014 @ 11:48 a.m.

Don, Brown has proven beyond all doubt that the power of money has corrupted politicians, and judges, in both parties to the point where we no longer have a democracy, but you have discussed that many times.

We The People are watching and doing nothing because throughout history the fact of political life is that democracies are doomed every time money takes the power away from the voters.

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Don Bauder July 26, 2014 @ 5:23 p.m.

Anon92107: Remember the days when we knew big money was too powerful but few would talk about it, lest the subject besmirch our beloved democracy?

Now the pols declare that corporations are people and the Supreme Court has given them carte blanche to steal elections. The corruption is wide open now. Best, Don Bauder

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monaghan July 26, 2014 @ 12:53 p.m.

There is something profoundly depressing about the juxtaposition of cut-throat politics and lofty ideals coming from a person like Jerry Brown. He knows what's right, but he does whatever is necessary to stay in office. First things first. Always.

Brown called for better public education and much-needed budget austerity and the public generously responded by approving a tax increase. Brown then called for more money to be spent on California's economically and academically poorest public school students, but he set up a bogus system like the opaque "Local Control Funding Formula" that puts all spending authority and oversight into the hands of local educrats.

In San Diego, that means carte blanche for an authoritarian puppet Superintendent of Schools controlled by a 100% AFl-CIO Labor Council-backed Board of Education. Look for LCFF financing huge "promised" raises for teachers across the spectrum instead of lower class sizes for students in the next year. And go to that new CA website (name?) where you can look up the salary of (almost) every public employee -- but not the ones employed by the Dan Diego Unified School District.

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Don Bauder July 26, 2014 @ 5:26 p.m.

monaghan: Students? Who cares about them? Education is for the administrators. Best, Don Bauder

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CaptD July 27, 2014 @ 12:34 p.m.

Salute to Michael Aguirre for continuing to stand up for all SoCal ratepayers.

Except for the San Diego Reader, main stream media has been almost silent on this 3+ Billion Dollar story, I wonder why?

We need to find out if SCE made their decision to decommission San Onofre after holding illegal secret meetings with some of the Utility "friendly" parties and/or others in the CA Government that wanted to end the San Onofre investigation, since they came up with a phony proposed settlement that the majority all costs would not only be paid by the ratepayers, (so SCE, SDG&E and their shareholders would not be held responsible) but that any further discovery into the San Onofre investigation would be stopped forever.

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Don Bauder July 27, 2014 @ 2:19 p.m.

CaptD: According to Mike Aguirre, there is no question that there were secret meetings prior to the announcement of a "settlement" by Edison and TURN. Aguirre has mentioned such hush-hush conclaves several times.

Meanwhile, can you answer a reader who wonders if San Onofre could be converted into a desalination plant? Best, Don Bauder

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CaptD July 28, 2014 @ 6:09 p.m.

Don - The site could very well be used for the San Onofre New Desalination Station (SANDS) as all the new equipment could be totally separated from the spent fuel pools that contain ☢ fuel and/or all the "stored" spent waste that are in casks.

Since it will take SCE decades to decommission San Onofre, it would be smart of the State to push for the use of part of the property for something else besides a nuclear waste dump that stores nuclear waste.

I have also suggested that the very large cooling water pipes that now run from San Onofre into the Pacific would make great outflow pipes from a desalination facility with the understanding that best practices would determine the exact configuration of any reuse of any components having to do with ☢, also be triple checked by independent experts!

I also think they should cover as much of San Onofre as possible with solar panels, since the grid connection is already in place and we need all the clean low cost GREEN energy we can get.

The State should issue a request for proposal (RFP), I'm sure that GE and other BIG Desalination Vendors would be very interested. It would be great to see what they come up with, especially since any real (vs the phony proposed) San Onofre settlement might see plenty of money shifted away from SCE shareholders to a desalinization project that would benefit everyone in SoCal.

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Don Bauder July 27, 2014 @ 2:20 p.m.

Bo Daniel: We have asked an engineer, CaptD, about the possibility of converting San Onofre to a desalination plant. Best, Don Bauder

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danfogel July 27, 2014 @ 8:48 p.m.

I'm not an engineer, but I'll ask just one question. Whom in their right mind would even think about putting a desal plant at the site of a former nuclear generating station that will be holding nuclear waste in spent fuel pools for the foreseeable future, several decades at the minimum?

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Don Bauder July 28, 2014 @ 8:34 a.m.

danfogel: That is an excellent question. Roy DeMille first suggested the conversion. I think he should answer your question. Best, Don Bauder

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danfogel July 28, 2014 @ 9:49 a.m.

don bauder, It was a rhetorical question. San Diego County Water Authority spent almost $1million about 10 yrs ago. At that time, they were considering using the infrastructure from unit 1 and placing the facility at one of 2 sites either east of I 5 about a mile north of the nuclear facility or on state park land just south of it. . A couple of things to consider. It will take years, maybe 10 to 20 depending on who you listen to, to fully decommission the remaining units at San Onofre. Also, not that long ago, the groundwater there was found to contain traces of radioactive detritus. I think that despite any potential the site MAY have had, it won’t be a viable candidate for a desalination plant in my lifetime, or probably that of my daughter.

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Don Bauder July 28, 2014 @ 3:47 p.m.

danfogel: Your explanation makes eminent sense. Best, Don Bauder

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Don Bauder July 28, 2014 @ 8:35 a.m.

Miriam Raftery: Good points and good editorial. Brown is not the first politician to sell his soul for money. In fact, is there one who has not? Best, Don Bauder

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Don Bauder July 28, 2014 @ 8:38 a.m.

John Salinas: This website is anti-renewable energy? I have been proselytizing for rooftop solar for years. Best, Don Bauder

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danfogel July 28, 2014 @ 9:25 a.m.

don bauder, I believe you need to look at John Salinas' comment again. Unless I am mistaken, and in this case I am not, his comment was a reply to that of Miriam Raftery and the link she provided to East County Magazine. He was not referring to the Reader.

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Don Bauder July 28, 2014 @ 3:49 p.m.

danfogel: In that case, I owe Salinas an apology. But I don't think Miriam's website and magazine are anti-renewal energy. Best, Don Bauder

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danfogel July 28, 2014 @ 4:41 p.m.

Forced to make a choice, I would say more pro environment that anti renewable energy, based on the small sampling I have.

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Don Bauder July 29, 2014 @ 8:17 a.m.

Ray Lutz: Did Brown orchestrate those deals? We are trying to find out just what role Brown has played with his friend Peevey. Best, Don Bauder

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Don Bauder July 29, 2014 @ 8:18 a.m.

Fotis Tsimboukakis: Yes, the suit was filed. It slipped through my fingers. I will post today (July 29). Best, Don Bauder

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