Item 65, June 9 agenda: Power Purchase Agreement requirements

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Leslie Pool
Posts: 207
Joined: Mon Jan 12, 2015 3:22 pm

Item 65, June 9 agenda: Power Purchase Agreement requirements

Post by Leslie Pool »

Colleagues,

I want to thank the sponsors of Item 65 for the effort to put labor front and center on our Power Purchase Agreements for Austin Energy. I share the interest in leveraging our purchasing power to gain progress for our climate and workers rights goals, and I’d like to gain more information about labor, contracts, and wages in the context of this proposal.

This is an ambitious prospect and, because it is, I would appreciate allowing our staff the time to give us their professional assessment and recommendations on how to move forward in ways that protect our electric utility’s future. I recommend a postponement so that we can gain insights from our staff and hear from them about how to proceed.

I have asked the City Manager to add this item to our Executive Session next week, and following that, recommend that we take the item up at an AEUOC meeting to give the issues the attention and focus they deserve.

I welcome your comments.

Thanks,

Leslie
Leslie Pool
Council Member, District 7
Steve Adler
Posts: 468
Joined: Fri Jan 16, 2015 2:12 pm

Re: Item 65, June 9 agenda: Power Purchase Agreement requirements

Post by Steve Adler »

Thank you CM Pool for highlighting concerns I also share about moving forward with CM Kitchen’s proposal until we learn more. I support CM Kitchen and our entire dais when we seek to leverage the City’s purchasing power to ensure fair wages for workers. Whether and how that’s something we should do here requires us to have more information than I’m aware we have. I agree with CM Pool that staff should be afforded enough time to advise us, given the importance of the issue.

-S
Mayor
Mackenzie Kelly
Posts: 29
Joined: Tue Jan 12, 2021 2:56 pm

Re: Item 65, June 9 agenda: Power Purchase Agreement requirements

Post by Mackenzie Kelly »

Colleagues,

Thank you both for daylighting the item on our June 9th agenda related to power purchase agreements. I concur that we should approach this item in executive session and then during our AEUOC meeting. I share similar concerns about not having enough information before the vote related to the item on our agenda. I look forward to discussing further and would appreciate following the aforementioned approach in our discussion related to that item.

Warm regards,

mk
Council Member, District 6
Ann Kitchen
Posts: 274
Joined: Fri Jan 09, 2015 4:04 pm

Re: Item 65, June 9 agenda: Power Purchase Agreement requirements

Post by Ann Kitchen »

All

I appreciate the opportunity to discuss the item in Executive Session, but feel this is a fundamental policy position that the City Council has long advanced. Protection of workers is part and parcel of our relationships with contractors and just as critical in this area as others we have advanced.

Waiting until the AEUDC meeting is not necessary or appropriate. That committee is the same as the full Council, so there is no reason to have the conversation twice.

Best Regards
Ann Kitchen
City Council D5
Ann Kitchen
Council Member District 5
Kathie Tovo
Posts: 121
Joined: Thu Oct 30, 2014 11:18 am

Re: Item 65, June 9 agenda: Power Purchase Agreement requirements

Post by Kathie Tovo »

Dear Colleagues,
Thank you for your thoughts on this important agenda item and the timing of the discussion.

I strongly support this resolution and regard it as very much in line with the way we have approached our third-party agreements in the context of other city work -- namely, making sure that those companies also provide the same worker protections that exist for city employees.

I support having this conversation as soon as possible - and no later than 6/16 -- so that we can ensure these protections are built into future contracts.

Best,
Kathie Tovo
Council District 9
Jose Chito Vela
Posts: 21
Joined: Fri Feb 11, 2022 8:16 am

Re: Item 65, June 9 agenda: Power Purchase Agreement requirements

Post by Jose Chito Vela »

Colleagues,

I join CM Kitchen and Tovo in urging that we move forward on this critical item before our summer break. As a major purchaser in this state of renewable energy, we have the opportunity and ability to make a significant impact to not only protect workers, but ensure project timeliness and stability through improved labor relations and better training, as well as improve service quality and reliability.

Austin has long been a leader in developing Community Workforce Agreements and similar in many other contexts, and this resolution is consistent with our established approach and values for contractors. Delay means less time for Austin Energy to prepare for upcoming Power Purchase Agreements and leaves in place policy that is out of step with our stated and demonstrated commitment to the safety and welfare of those whose work we rely on to achieve our city’s goals.

This an approach that has been successfully implemented in other cities around the US, and there is ample evidence and research available. I urge us to take action at our upcoming meeting and definitely by no later than June 16.

Saludos,

Chito
Vanessa Fuentes
Posts: 27
Joined: Tue Jan 19, 2021 9:02 am

Re: Item 65, June 9 agenda: Power Purchase Agreement requirements

Post by Vanessa Fuentes »

For all the reasons that CMs Kitchen, Tovo, and Vela have pointed out, I join them in strongly supporting Item 65 and ask for consideration of this item as soon as possible and no later than June 16th.

Yours in community,
Vanessa
Council Member, District 2
Leslie Pool
Posts: 207
Joined: Mon Jan 12, 2015 3:22 pm

Re: Item 65, June 9 agenda: Power Purchase Agreement requirements

Post by Leslie Pool »

thanks to all for adding your thoughts on this thread. I've conferred with Spencer and Jackie, and staff will be prepared to discuss this item with us in Executive Session on June 16.

Leslie
Leslie Pool
Council Member, District 7
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