Tomorrow on Patt Morrison's show, I'll be talking to her about DWP oversight and reform measures proposed at City Council (and how they contrast with DWP's own ideas of oversight, as well as those of neighborhood activists). I'll have a separate roundup before then of DWP oversight efforts at the council.
But today I want to point out Mark Gold's take on DWP oversight at his entertainingly ranty* site, Spouting Off. Gold asserts out that Villaraigosa and DWP aren't working toward their lofty environmental goals in a timely fashion:
No initiative can mandate the leadership that is needed to ensure that DWP replaces or repairs decaying infrastructure and moves forward aggressively on sustainable local water supplies and a 40% renewable energy portfolio without dirty coal. The Office of Public Accountability shouldn’t be needed to hold DWP responsible for meeting the city’s goals. That’s the job of the DWP Commission, City Council, and the mayor’s office. They all need to make sure that DWP senior managers meet environmental milestones, provide more complete financial information, and tie rate increases solely to infrastructure replacement, repair and maintenance, green power enhancement, and sustainable local water sourcing.
The other thing Gold suggests is that there may be another - cheaper - agency to handle the city's water:
The Department of Public Works has responsibility over sewage and stormwater, but DWP is in charge of drinking water. Public Works has embraced watershed protection and has even reorganized and planned to better manage watershed resources. Other than water conservation, DWP hasn’t changed much in water management since the days of Mulholland.
He makes a case he's made before, for water and power to be separate agencies. Read more at http://spoutingoff.wordpress.com/.
*endorsement is of ranty nature, not rant content itself. As always, Pacfic Swell is a ratepayer of DWP, and covers the municipal utility. Also, I love a good rant.