Making a Difference by Speaking Up

What I appreciate most about TURN members is their willingness to make a difference by speaking up. In my first six months at TURN, you have spoken up to make a difference by opposing Edison’s rate hike, fighting to end privacy fees for unlisted numbers, and helped us cut the lag time in recording and responding to your donations–which we deeply appreciate.

What I appreciate most about TURN members is their willingness to make a difference by speaking up. I can think of three different ways members have spoken up to make a difference during my first six months at TURN.

Opposing Edison’s Rate Hike

We asked you to fill out postcards stating your opposition to Southern California Edison’s attempt to raise your electric bills by more than $100 per year,and boy did you respond.

You sent back over 1,000 postcards which I had the privilege of delivering in person to the public participation hearing on the Edison rate hike held in Long Beach on April 28 (see page 5, Consumers Unite). Sometimes it is just too hard to attend some of these hearings, with the distances being so far, the price of gasoline being sky high, so many of us working long hours or two jobs just to make ends meet, or our health not being good enough to make long trips.

The beauty of sending in these postcards is that your voices were heard, even if you could not be there in person, and you have made it harder for Edison to raise your bills.

Fighting to End Fees for Unlisted Numbers

When asked to send letters to your state senators to voice your support for privacy rights and an end to fees for unlisted numbers, you responded in even larger numbers.

Over 2,000 of you sent letters supporting Senate Bill 1423, which we hand-delivered to each of the Senate offices in Sacramento. You should take pride in the fact that your letters emboldened sixteen senators to find the courage to vote yes on this bill, in defiance of AT&T, who hired sixteen full-time lobbyists and spent millions to defeat this simple consumer protection.

Even with all of the money AT&T spent, this bill came very close to passing, and you can count on TURN to be back next year prepared to win this fight, with your continued support.

Cutting the Time Lag for Recording Donations

I want to thank each member who has taken the time to write to me during the past several months.

Several people have written to ask why they keep getting letters asking them to renew their memberships after they have sent in a check for their dues, sometimes weeks or even months after they have already paid. It took a while to figure out that the problem was too many hands were handling the checks before they were recorded, as with the adage that too many cooks spoil the broth. So we have come up with a solution to reduce the time lag for recording donations by eliminating the middleman and rerouting all of your donations directly to TURN.

By September, we will be recording dues and donations within one week, and we will see that you are given the credit you deserve and taken off of the renewal list as quickly as possible.

It is good to know you hold your representatives at the Legislature, the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC), and even here at TURN accountable when necessary. Your voices are being heard


Mark Toney's Signature