A Houston power provider has declared bankruptcy and is being sued by the state for price gouging during the storm. One woman was charged over $9,500 for 19 days of electricity instead of her usual $250 per month. I feel sorry for the company - they were just passing on what they were being charged by ERCOT.
All 3 members of PUC (that oversees ERCOT) have now resigned, clearing the way for a state attempt to rescind a lot of charges.
The relatively unregulated system is based on supply and demand, and finally some Texans are realising that that is not the way that a public utility should be managed. How on earth can you justify pricing half the population out of using electricity during a big freeze?
The chair of the PUC (Public Utilities Commission) was asked to resign after a report that he privately reassured out-of-state investors who profited from the power crisis that he was “working to keep their windfall safe.”
Who would ever have guessed that a republican appointee would put profit above ordinary Texans?
Could be an interesting legal case.
Price gouging is illegal in Texas especially during a crisis, and some hotels are being sued by the state for increasing prices during the cold weather.
At exactly the same time some natural gas suppliers increased their charges by 15,000%, and the state of Texas has refused to sue them. So CPS - the San Antonio city owned power provider - is suing them instead.
As it currently stands, our domestic power bill for February has been revised from $55 to $110. That's not a problem for us, but a lot of families will really struggle to pay double their usual bill.
In its infinite wisdom, the Texas state senate is debating whether the best way to avoid a repeat of the power shortage is to tax renewable energy supplies. Fortunately, power companies are complaining:
The Alamo is the Texas Stonehenge. It is a big tourist attraction that is smaller and less impressive than people expect, it is actually just one of a series of structures in the area, and people disagree over what it represents. But this is Texas, so the disagreements go much deeper.
I have never visited it, since it tells just one side - freedom, liberty, individualism - of a story that also includes racism, slavery, and colonialism. Now some are trying to tell the other side.