Sen. Zumbach needs to serve constituent, not party

Letter to the Editor

To the Editor,

     Recently our Senator Zumbach voted for an amended energy bill, which passed on a party-line vote. His constituents need to know what this bill will do so you can ask yourselves what he is doing and ask him how this helps his constituents. The bill he favored was SF2311, which would cap energy programs and reduce investment in energy efficiency by Iowa’s utilities by over $100 million per year, jeopardizing thousands of clean energy jobs and relatively low rates for all utility consumers.

     What does it mean for his constituents? The programs he wants to curtail generate $2 to $3 of benefits for every dollar expended. They help people spend less on energy by helping them upgrade their homes and businesses so they need less heating and cooling, use less energy in the appliances and lighting they use, and in the end we spend millions less not purchasing more generating capacity or adding to our power bills to pay for this extra power. In simple terms, our rates are less because we use less. We enjoy the lowest energy costs in the entire Midwest because of these energy strategies enacted 30 years ago that have been kept going each session until now; my question is, why is doing away with this a good thing?

     What this bill does do is reduce the oversight of the Iowa Utilities Board in keeping these rate hikes off the consumers’ back. It reduces the timeframe and ability of the Iowa Utilities Board to stop needless surcharges on the customers to build excess capacity.

     As constituents, we have nothing to gain from this political wrangling over a program that yields results and does so much to keep our energy grid as effective and as low cost to the customer as possible. This sort of politicking grinds development to a halt. The rest of the world is fast moving toward solar and wind capacity, lowering the need for fossil fuels that blacken our skies and creating global warming. This sort of foolishness is not helpful and is going to be costly for all in his district. I say enough! Do the job you are intended to do and work for your votes, not your party!

Steve Hanken

Monticello, Iowa



Subscriber Login