Governor Reveals Few 2004 Energy Meetings

By Published On: January 8, 2005

Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger?s 2004 calendar appointments, released at the end of last year, reveal that he held a couple of meetings with California Public Utilities Commission members and met with executives from Southern California Edison and Pacific Gas & Electric?but not Sempra. There were no meetings with consumer groups?large or small. One consumer group, The Utility Reform Network, said the governor ignored a meeting request; others say the group did not attempt to get onto his schedule. The calendar items listed were mostly vague?noting, for example, merely ?energy briefing.? The list featured some names on the energy radar, such as that of Federal Energy Regulatory Commission chair Pat Wood (once), as well as others outside the usual business circles, including Jay Leno (twice) and Danny DeVito (twice). The appointment calendar shows that the request for special rates for the organic food processor Amy?s Kitchen goes back at least to last January 27, when the governor met with Amy?s chief executive officer Andy Berliner. Despite the governor?s request to the CPUC for discounted electric rates, Amy?s did not get special treatment and expanded its manufacturing in Oregon instead of California (<i>Circuit</i>, Oct. 29, 2004). Highlights of the calendar include a January 14 meeting with Vice President Dick Cheney, marked ?private??an unusual notation in the calendar pages. The next day, the state chief met with CPUC members Mike Peevey and Susan Kennedy. On August 3, the governor met with commissioner Geoffrey Brown and again with Peevey. In addition, Edison president Bob Foster and Edison International chief executive officer John Bryson showed up on January 28. PG&E chief executive officer Bob Glynn met with the governor May 18. Calpine was the only private energy company that appeared in the calendar?for an August 23 meeting. The governor had eight ?energy briefings? throughout the year, four of them in March. There was one ?summer electrical supply? cabinet briefing, on April 30. There was an ?energy private lunch,? on September 21. He had one ?LNG briefing,? on April 1. There were also two ?Hydrogen Highway media events,? on April 29 and October 22. Despite the vague details, making the appointment calendar public is a step toward understanding who gets access to the governor. During the energy crisis, CPUC members refused to reveal their calendars, notwithstanding reporters? requests through the Freedom of Information Act.

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