This Made the Tea Unfit for Drinking, even for Americans

In 1775 a shipment of tea sailed into Boston Harbor. Due to an imposed tax levied by King George of England, it was considered by the natives to cost far more than it was worth. After a long stalemate, a band of English speaking Indians suddenly materialized on the dock, (no doubt drunk, being from Massachusetts) and proceeded to gather the chests of tea and throw them all overboard. This, unfortunately made the tea rather unfit for drinking, even for Americans………………..

Perhaps those at Delmarva Power think they are the new king here in Delaware?

Thanks to Tommywonk for reviving this story. Today’s News Journal informs us that Delmarva Power has now joined its sister company Connectiv and has filed suit to postpone its negotiations with Bluewater Wind.

This affects every Delawarean, far more than did the rate increase last May. This tactic of delay on behalf of Delmarva, may raise our utility rates up another 100% above and beyond the 60% increase we took last year. This perfunctory delay is an attempt to stall the Bluewater Wind farm as long as possible, buying time so that Delmarva can capitalize on anticipated high market rates expected to slam us over the next 5 years. Coal costs are expected to triple, and natural gas costs are estimated to expand 100% by most insider trade magazines. But if negotiations with Bluewater Wind accelerate as planned, then Delmarva will be stuck selling energy to Delawareans entering it’s grid a little more than 2 cents per kilowatt cost, instead those amounts way over 25 cents per kilowatt that their competitors can expect to receive by generating with expensive coal and gas.

The downside for us is that we, the Delaware consumers, will be paying our 7 cents surcharge to Delmarva on the back of market costs of 25 cents, as opposed to wind’s potential rate of 2 cents. Bottom line, the longer Delmarva delays, the longer we are forced to pay at least 18 cents per kilowatt hour, an amount we should rightfully have no reason to pay, except for the delaying action caused by the two said parties. This delay tactic could cost most homes up to an additional 100 dollars per month. These are the stakes.

Delmarva and Connectiv are filing suit on the weak basis that no state regulatory commission has the right to tell them what to do. If one uses and twists their same argument, then it stands to reason that the citizens of the Delmarva peninsula, who are in true Soprano fashion being exhorted to pay far more than they normally should under natural market circumstances, should also file suit in Superior Court against Delmarva and Connectiv and in an open class action lawsuit, file for future estimated damages.

As with any form of litigation, the monies in question should be held in escrow. It is my recommendation that in payment of all future utility bills after July 1, 2007 that 50% be paid to Delmarva and the remaining 50% be held in trust by one of Delaware’s banks, which should be determined by the courts or General Assembly. In all fairness to the bank, considering the large amount of cash flowing in due to this decision, they should be allowed to collect 1% and with successful settling of the case, turn over the remaining 99% of the funds to Delmarva Power.

Delmarva will clamor that this is not fair. But let us look at the question of fair to whom. The wisdom of following this course of action may prove to ultimately benefit Delmarva as well as all Delawareans.

Should 50% of their future monthly income remain frozen as they await their case in Superior court, Delmarva will be forced to negotiate quickly. Pending a successful negotiation with Bluewater Wind, Delmarva’s customers will no longer have to worry about paying more monies solely due Delmarva’s delaying action. The monies could be freed up and released to Delmarva. But if the company takes the other tack, and insists on dragging its feet and postponing the negotiations with Bluewater Wind, then the escrowed amount might be used to augment those individual citizens having difficulty paying their electric bills when they began peaking over $300 per month per household.

This provides very solid ground for a citizen’s group to sue Delmarva.

1) Tactics of delay will cost future Delawareans tremendous amounts of money. This willful act on the part of Delmarva, is an attempt to collect money that is not theirs to grab.

2) As a corporation within this state, Delmarva is bound to those laws, enacted by the General Assembly, and enforced by those regulatory commissions enacted as overseer. Delmarva, by refusing to negotiate in good faith with Bluewater Wind as is required by 7199, has willfully acted in defiance of the General Assembly’s EURCSA and HB6 2006.

3) Due to the gross amounts of money at stake, this matter should be moved forward on the docket, to be expedited as quickly as can be done. On behalf of all of Delaware’s citizens, until this decision has been put to test, a substantial portion (50%) of money currently owed Delmarva should be withheld and placed by each citizen if they choose, into an escrow monitored by the court where it will be held until the completed court processes can determine to whom the money should belong: to Delmarva company for successfully completing its good faith negotiations, or to be returned to the people for their future damages that result from their being victims of this tactic of delay.

This filing can be done tomorrow.

Should this challenge fail, then Delawarean’s could simply choose to drag out and not pay their bills until a good faith deal was done. This is actually more American of an idea than you might think. If organized, and sponsored wholeheartedly by 94 % of those Delawareans who want the wind deal to go through, enforcement of payment could and would not take place.

Having crowned itself king, Delmarva has turned a deaf ear to public politics. Let’s see if they notice us when they stop getting money…………………..