Tuesday, July 10, 2012

NY Attorney General Is Worried Con Ed Taking Risks with Public Safety

By MK Metz
Consolidated Edison officials said they would restart talks with its biggest union Tuesday, while a company spokesman defended its handling of the lockout, according to the Wall Street Journal.

The Journal notes that for Con Ed, which serves more than three million customers, the lockout is a calculated gamble to control its labor costs.

The company wants to change pension plans for new hires.

But State Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman is questioning Con Ed’s emergency preparedness, says the Journal News.

“The bottom line is that without its regular outside plant workers Con Edison cannot be prepared for a storm or a heat failure. I urge the PSC to ensure that Con Ed has the proper contingency plans in place,” Schneiderman wrote Friday.

During last week's heat wave, Con Edison cut power to major swaths of Brooklyn by 5 percent over several days. But cooler weather has helped the manager-workers on the streets play catch up.

Con Ed has begun concealing the addresses on its online outage map to prevent crews from being harassed, according to Newsday.

Con Edison has a 38-year history of boosting its dividend, which currently stands at a 3.9% dividend yield.

The sign shown above, at 1 Pierrepont Plaza in Downtown Brooklyn, instructs Con Ed employees to enter the building using a side entrance. The sign appeared when the lockout started last week.

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