Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Throwing Mother Under the Bus . . .

What an outrageous headline to be awakened with by the Observer-Dispatch this morning:

"Acceptable?" Since when did any route become acceptable?

For the O-D (and you can probably bet for most of our political leadership "brain trust" that they seem to be connected to) this is going to be the "out" to make it look like they've accomplished something: change NYRI's route to avoid New Hartford . . . Put parts of it underground, out of sight ... They will be able to live with that. . . . but what of their grandchildren? They won't be living with that because they won't be here.

Our local "illuminati" are playing ostrich, hiding their heads in the sand. They are pretending that if they can't see the power line, it will be OK. It will NOT be OK.

Perhaps they would understand better if they got off their a**es and covered the news. . . Even local news.

Local media was no where to be seen at the New York Power Authority Trustees meeting yesterday in Utica . . None of them. . . . No OD, No WIBX, No WKTV, No Sentinel . . .

Here, a NY Government agency was doing something right -- putting its deliberations right out there for the public to see - - - but the public didn't see because the media did not announce the meeting and couldn't be bothered to attend.

Had they bothered to attend, they would have seen people trying to do what they believed was best for New York . . . but they would have also seen people who do not understand our needs. . .

It was nice to hear Mr. Kessel, NYPA's new president and chief executive officer, express pleasure at being in the "great city of Utica." . . . (Hopefully he will come again). He indicated that he had met the day before with the mayor, congressman, and other local officials . . . which brought a slight sense of relief because none of them were at the meeting either. . . But did our local officials really represent our interests?

Mr. Kessel noted that NYRI was a local concern, and how NYPA was taking another look at one of its old plans to run a powerline under the Hudson River to New York City. He also mentioned how NYPA was in discussions to purchase more power from Hydro Quebec and from Ontario, to bring more power "into Upstate." He expressed hope that with these measures . . .

New York City would be relieved of having to build another generating plant.

That is the problem . . . That is OUR problem, because two things are being done to us:
  1. the adverse impacts of generating/delivering power for New York City are being shifted to US with nothing given in return
  2. the cheap hydropower that built Upstate's manufacturing base and allowed workers to afford a decent quality of life has been sent downstate, resulting in massive job losses.
The effect of all this power transmission is to make Upstate part of the New York City energy market . . . but without us being part of the New York City economy. Under these circumstances, Upstate will not survive.

Our local officials don't seem to understand that this is what has happened to us . . . and our local media do not seem to want to understand.

NYPA's plans represent a continuation of the policies that have failed Upstate for 30 years. They don't seem to understand that they failed, but its clear that it is not for lack of trying.

NYPA wants to listen to us, but we were not there to talk to them.

[update: Here is the NYPA Trustee Webcast]


Anonymous said...

Sadly, people downstate don't care about anything further upstate than Albany. I really wish the city would break away and become the 51st state.

Strikeslip said...

Kim -- I don't think they don't care . . . I think that they don't understand . . . and Upstate no longer has the representation in the Senate that it did in the 50s and early 60s (before a court mandated reapportionment) to make them understand. Back then, Upstate and Downstate worked together and accommodated each other's needs. All parts of the state prospered.

If Upstate were represented as it was before reapportionment, I do not think you would see the decline that you see today.

RomeHater said...

Yet another example of the bifrocation of big cities vs small towns (or smaller cities). Also, the triumph of the new Communism. Upstate has slightly higher capacity than it needs, so let's make a big swath of the state dagerously low on available electricity.

We're the soda, NYC is the moochers and the only one making money is the guy selling the straw.

The solution? Municipal Power!

Hollis said...

Don't rush to embrace NYPA too quickly. Richard Kessell was the politcal hatchetman sent to shut down Shoreham and then asa chairman of LIPA, he moaned about lights going out on Long Island.

On one of his first days on the job he said he favors creation of new transmission lines in Upstate NY.

Also, he has nevr had areal job. he has been an Albany insider his entire career so has no concept about whaat real people need, want or can afford.

What is truly needed is for people to regain theanger they felt early on on in the fight vs. NYRI and take over from the elected officials and quasi-government agencies burning up taxpayer dollars. People needto say "NO!" and stand by it.