I decided to combine these two into one post because they pretty much deal with the same issue – renewable energy and how to get it. With the increase of gas prices (which now seems like a small problem compared to the larger economic crisis) these two issues got on the ballot and are an attempt to move California in the direction of renewable energy. Here they are:
Would require publicly and privately owned utility companies to generate 20% of their power from renewable energy by 2010, 40% by 2020 and 50% by 2025 and would impose penalties (subject to waivers in some circumstances) for failure to meet these requirements.
My vote: No.
Why: I don't like the idea of the government forcing utility companies to do this. The trend is going in that direction anyway and energy companies are going to move toward renewable energy in order to stay in business. All I see this doing (besides making some people feel like they're socially and environmentally responsible) is increasing utility bills for us as the companies try to meet certain benchmarks by certain dates.
Proposition 10: Alternate Energy Bonds
Prop 10 would allow the state to sell $5 billion in bonds, of which $3.425 billion would be used to help consumers and others purchase high fuel economy or fuel efficient vehicles and $1.25 billion would be used for research and development of renewable energy technology (primarily solar). The remainder would be used to give grants to cities for renewable energy projects. California's independent legal analyst estimates the cost to California to be $10 billion in principal and interest, with additional state costs of $10/million for administration.
My vote: Hell no.
Why: Should be obvious by now. Lots more spending, creating more government administration/bureaucracy - surely we can find better things to do with our money.