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GWP sale is not a reasonable option

August 20, 2013

Reading the News-Press article of Aug. 8 related to the city manager’s suggestion that the Glendale Department of Water & Power be sold reminded me of a child who is losing the game and threatens to take his ball and go home. It certainly did not sound like a seasoned manager charged with the responsibility of running one of the most populous cities in California.

Such a reckless option flies in the face of common sense, let alone 21st-century management techniques. Such a disastrous alternative kills the goose that lays the golden egg, as the city would no longer have the opportunity to raid the coffers of GWP annually of $20-plus millions. In addition, the utility would bring a relatively small sales price and thus would be throwing away billions of dollars in investments over the last century. Any potential buyer would have their own income statement and shareholders' interests at heart and not the citizenry of Glendale. Thus residents and businesses could look forward to extremely high and growing utility rates. GWP suffers from the effects of some very bad managerial decisions in the past. Glendale's forefathers would be turning over in their graves to learn that Glendale might dispose of its precious jewel.

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Glendale and GWP need a high degree of quality in managerial staff and decisions, not just a policy throwing taxpayers' money at a problem. Selling the utility would be throwing the baby out with the bathwater.

Claude Soderstrom
Verdugo City

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