GVEA has taken out 3 days of a full page ad to promo the G&T. I’ve posted it here, but have done a bit of editorial corrections, as I see it. GVEA spent $5,000 of the members’ money on this ad.
While missing board member Delong declined to be in the ad due to the advocating for the G&T, perhaps it would have been better to have him included with a caveat that he has concerns about the G&T proposal. It appears kind of one sided as is.
That being said, the ad is pretty much in your face, overkill, far more than one would expect for something that only saves the members’ some of their capital credits in advance. I was told by GVEA executive management that, if the members reject this, the issue will be dropped. Others have expressed conspiracy theories, which I would like to reject, but it makes me wonder why not just let the members vote? Is it just the ego of potentially not getting their way?
I do worry that GVEA will fail to meet their financial target in 2006, which will put them in default for the second year in a row, causing them to have to increase their margins. I certainly hope this is not the case, but they’ve been on a big spending spree the past few years and don’t show signs of tightening their belts in a number of areas. I don’t mean those that would create safety or service issues for consumers.
I think that there ought to be deeper scrutiny of the budget beyond that of staff and the board, if they can’t seem to do it themselves. There was just a several hour 2007 budget workshop with the board, but the board appeared to approve it with only minor modifications. I’m not a big fan of wholesale budget cutting, but we the consumers pay for those who won’t strategically conserve during lean times. If it is our utility, as the ad indicates, how about making the budget easily available for members to critique?