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Vote yes on Proposal 3

Published 10:20pm Wednesday, October 17, 2012

To the editor:

I cannot believe Polly Judd did her homework on Proposal 3 before submitting her recently published letter in this forum against the proposal and criticizing Carol Higgins of Mendon, who apparently did do her research.

I hope Ms. Judd was enlightened by both the front-page article in the Daily News from Oct. 10 and the opinion of Mr. William Griffin of Edwardsburg in the same edition.

Having done my homework and being possessed of both common sense and intelligence, I cannot see why, being faced with the negative health and environmental effects caused by the continued use of coal to produce electricity, anyone would not wish to see a substantial conversion to clean energy as quickly as possible.

The only ones who do not want this sorely needed conversion to take place are the coal companies and the electrical cooperative executives who don’t want to spend the money for fear it could negatively effect their salaries and perks.

Being as I am already paying an extremely hefty monthly electrical bill as a Midwest Energy customer, an annual increase of a maximum of 1 percent to my bill would hardly be noticed; as, I suspect, would it with anyone else’s.

The cost of electricity for Midwest Energy’s customers skyrocketed following their acquisition of our former Fruit Belt Co-op.

While I cannot deny the reliability of service has improved, I’m not sure paying two to four times as much for that reliability is worth it.

Does anyone else besides me remember when we used to see a CREDIT each month on our Fruit Belt bills under “Power Cost Adjustment?” Long gone are those days.

Midwest is crying NO because the proposal allows them to add only an additional maximum of 1 percent per year to consumer costs. They claim they are well on their way to meeting the standard of 10 percent by 2015, so why can’t they do the additional 15 percent in the next 10 years? That’s only 1 1/2 percent per year.

We need more clean energy production, so please vote yes on Proposal 3.

Lois Karasek


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  • Jim Weeks

    All of the opposition to Proposal 3 is from MI based job providers and residential customers.
    All told, 12.1 percent, or 1.2 million, of Michigan’s residents have an income below the federal poverty line, the latest U.S. Census figures show.

    In a recent interview on “The Tony Conley Show” (WILS-AM), AARP Michigan President Bob Kolt said senior citizens on fixed incomes have to be careful with every penny and won’t support Proposal 3 if they’re aware the constitutional mandate would raise their utility bills.

    “Even if limited to one percent a year or even $1 dollar a year, seniors living on a fixed income – many are at the brink of poverty – and if they know their utility bill is going up, they will vote against that proposal,” Kolt said on the Conley show.

    Maureen Taylor, longtime chairperson of the Michigan Welfare Rights Organization, echoed Kolt’s comments and said poor and low-income families would be in jeopardy if Proposal 3 passes.

    “Locking at least $12 billion into our constitution and on the backs of Michigan’s most fragile families is ill-advised, especially during these difficult economic times when folks are trying to stand on two feet,” said Taylor, whose organization represents more than 277,000 families across the state.

    The Heat and Warmth Fund (THAW), Michigan’s leading voice for many of the state’s low-income families, seniors and the working poor, also opposes the costly constitutional energy mandate.

    You can see this is far from a utilities’ disinformation campaign as alleged. It is about real MI people.

    Contrast this with supporters like the San Francisco based “Green Tech Action Fund” and Wall Street hedge fund managers in New York that do not disclose their donors.

    In my opinion, the real weakness in this proposal is that it isn’t completely about improving air quality in Michigan, but it portends to do so. As an example, switching from coal to natural gas or using nuclear for electric generation is not recognized as cleaner energy under this proposal. However, from an emissions standpoint both are much cleaner than using woody biomass, which does receive credit. Also, for intermittent energy like wind, you have to make a double investment (another plant to follow load). This is because wind generation is not reliable (intermittent) and a large majority of the time provides its output during hours of low electric demand.

    So if we are forced to use wind, we also need another fossil/nuclear fueedl plant to follow the customer’s real time usage. You also have to make large investment in very costly transmission to crisscross the state to bring the wind from its source back to the load. Solar, which is on-peak, doesn’t need backup generation like wind, can be located close to load, is more reliable, but receives the same credit for as wind under this proposal (it receives extra recognition under our current legislatively passed plan – appropriately so).

    Support MI jobs and residential customers, like former MI Attorney General Frank J. Kelley does, and join him in opposing this Constitutional proposal. Together we can send a strong message to out-of-state interests and Wall Street hedge fund managers trying to push a high-cost scheme to line their pockets at the expense of MI taxpayers.

  • Samuel Taylor

    Since the “Wealthy” are the JOB CREATORS, they
    should not have to pay for their utilities.
    the people of Michigan should provide them
    to the wealthy, as a token of their gratitude,
    for all the wealthy provide for the poor.
    without them, you wouldn,t even have a WAL-mart

    Sam Taylor

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