Don Bauder 4:30 p.m., Dec. 9
Economic Indicators, SDG&E Profits Rise = Sempra Energy Revenue Down 20+%?
Despite improving local economic indicators and a rise in SDG&E earnings over the previous reported year, Sempra Energy dropped from $10.8 billion in 2008 to just $8.1 billion in 2009.
By comparison, Sempra Energy reported revenues of $7.9 billion in 2003.
Sempra Energy stockholder continue to enjoy dividend payments of around 37%-40% of retained earnings, or about 3% of share price.
While SDG&E earned $344 million on $2.9 billion in revenues as the San Diego gas and electric franchisee, there was no revision of the 2063 completion date for putting power lines underground. Meanwhile, the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) is preparing to issue its ruling on Wildfire Expense Balancing Accounts (WEBA) as a mechanism for taxing customers for the utility's legal costs from wildfires. 2009 SDG&E employee testimony before CPUC regarding the Witch and Rice Wildfires appears to show that failing to put power lines underground is a significant factor in the future wildfire risk to San Diego residents.
According to the National Response Framework and proposed National Disaster Recovery Framework, county residents should expect to be without assistance for at least the first three days of a major wildfire complex or comparable disaster. The Obama administration's proposed National Disaster Recovery Framework recommends that citizens prepare themselves by organizing from the ground up rather than depend on top-down assistance that may be delayed.
Interested citizens may get FEMA certification in disaster response training by taking free independent study courses at the Emergency Management Institute, where a complete listing of online courses may be found at http://training.fema.gov/IS/crslist.asp. These are the same courses that are required to be taken by local government leaders and emergency managers for compliance with federal emergency expense reimbursement, and residents who complete EMI courses may be more informed on how local tax dollars are allocated for disaster planning and emergency services.