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NEWS: Los Angeles' Bungled Solar Plan

How D'Arcy and Villaraigosa turned clean energy into a dirty dispute

 

By BETH BARRETT  LA Weekly February 10, 2009 at 11:32pm

 

Despite its sunny title, the “Green Energy and Good Jobs for Los Angeles Solar Initiative” is dogged by the fact that the plan to generate 400 megawatts from acres of glistening photo-voltaic panels creates city-government jobs while cutting the area’s hungry private solar firms out of a six-year bonanza.

Measure B landed on the March ballot after less public input than any billion-dollar government scheme in Southern California in recent memory. Criticism has grown intense even as a slick campaign embraced by many leading politicians to win over voters gets under way.

On February 5, City Controller Laura Chick, an often tough-minded fiscal watchdog, publicly broke with Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa to oppose Measure B, which she sees as a confusing, nontransparent, potentially greatly expensive, hurriedly-cobbled-together plan.

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