Oct 1, 2008

Ministers Panic Over News THat Power Prices Are To Rise 12%

1 October was meant to be the day the Government started winning back votes as people started seeing the effects of a tax cut. Instead people now face the prospect of their tax cut being more than gobbled up by higher power prices. So the reaction from Ministers has been quick. We share Gerry Brownlie's scepticism. At the start of the year we predicted that David Parker will be responsible for Labour losing this election. Recent developments are making this increasingly likely. (And these power hikes have nothing to do with the ETS which will increase prices even further.) This from Tracy Watkins in the Dominion Post.

Soaring power price rises are to be put under the spotlight, but scepticism has greeted suggestions of a Government inquiry.
Commerce and energy ministers Lianne Dalziel and David Parker hit out at "alarming" rises of up to 12 per cent in Wellington and parts of the South Island, and said they would seek Cabinet approval for an inquiry.
But National's energy spokesman, Gerry Brownlee, said the promise of an inquiry was too little, too late, after a 48 per cent rise in domestic power prices in the past five years.
"Suddenly, on the eve of an election, they announce a review ... After nine long years and regular complaints about the state of transmission and generation, they are trying to pretend they will do something about it."