I want to express TURN’s gratitude for your ongoing support. With your help, we have won important victories for consumers in California victories that contribute to creating the kind of state we all want, one where essential services are affordable, corporations are accountable and community life is sustainable.
Letter From Our Executive Director—December 2008
With the new year upon us, I want to express TURN’s gratitude to each and every one of our members for your ongoing support. With your help, we have won important victories for consumers in California–victories that contribute to creating the kind of state we all want, one where essential services are affordable, corporations are accountable and community life is sustainable.
We are especially grateful to the more than 1,700 consumers who signed our petition to stop the AT&T service agreement. Many more traveled to California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) meetings here in San Francisco to speak out against this unfair agreement and to speak up for affordable universal phone service in California. Thanks to our efforts, the CPUC has put AT&T’s service agreement on hold.
We are also grateful to the whistleblowers at Southern California Edison Company who revealed that Edison was routinely falsifying customer satisfaction surveys back in 2004. Last year, TURN and our allies finally won $145 million in refunds for the customers who were harmed by Edison’s deception. And we are grateful that the CPUC has ruled in our favor on the troubling issue of utility company use of payday lenders as payment centers, a huge step toward our eventual goal of discontinuing their use altogether.
There is still more to be done. With the economy in a recession and many Californians out of work, TURN’s commitment to making sure everyone in our state has access to basic, essential phone service and energy for heating, lighting and cooking is more urgent than ever before. TURN will continue to fight phone deregulation, the biggest threat to universal phone service here in California, and also the biggest driver of higher phone rates at a time many consumers can least afford it.
With the joint concerns of an economic downturn and the need to address global warming at the forefront, TURN will redouble our efforts on behalf of gas and electric consumers. We want you to get the most green for the least green, so we are demanding that consumer-funded conservation programs deliver real benefits that save customers money and actually reduce energy usage and greenhouse gas emissions. And we continue to lead efforts to make sure that California’s commitment to renewable energy does not come with an unreasonable price tag.
As always, TURN will continue to challenge utility company efforts to shift costs from big consumers to small ones, raise rates at every opportunity, and impose fancy and expensive new technologies of dubious value onto consumers. And we are working hard to push the utility companies to do more to help consumers in dire straights keep their lights on and avoid costly and dangerous shut-offs. These efforts cannot succeed without you, our loyal and active members.
The entire TURN staff and I want you to know how much we appreciate your support. We wish you a happy and healthy new year. Please remember TURN in the coming year. A gift to us, or a gift of membership to a friend, is a gift that will keep on giving all year long.
Wishing you a happy new year,