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Franchise Update: The Council Must Hold The Line

Folks, this is it. The City Council is going to vote next Tuesday on whether we will have a willing partner or an adversary in our fight for a climate safe and ready future.

So much is on the line, but know this: the proposed electric and gas Franchise Agreement are bad. They are another sweetheart real estate deal for special interests that will give SDG&E:

  • 20 year contracts with no risk of early termination.

  • Billions in profit while SDG&E continues to fight against our community’s climate, equity, and wildfire safety goals.

  • No real incentive or commitment to partner with the City and community on our most pressing needs.

The proposal also forces the City to pay self-imposed termination fees if they decide to exit the agreements to keep San Diego families hooked on SDG&E for decades to come, and are designed to prevent the City from exploring other options. These are bad terms that give SDG&E a structural advantage over the City, and we cannot accept them.

Thankfully, the deal is not done until the City Council votes. Multiple Councilmembers have expressed serious concerns about these unfair and one-sided contracts.

The agreements do not meet many of the Councilmember’s expectations. There is no simple appraisal Right to Purchase clause. There is no binding commitment to climate, equity, and wildfire safety. The additional equity dollars we’re supposed to receive are conditional on the City accepting an automatic extension with SDG&E that will lock us into multi-decade-long deals with them. That is the very definition of inequity.

The climate crisis will not wait for SDG&E. We do not have the luxury of time to hope they will willingly help us transition off fossil fuels and dangerous methane gas. The time for accepting the status quo is over. The Council must vote these agreements down and start anew.

Please join us next Tuesday to fight against SDG&E’s bad Franchise deals. Stay tuned for our call to action.

Thanks for joining us in this fight.

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