Should electricity remain a utility — or should it be a right?
U.S. Rep. Jamaal Bowman answers that question with a bill he’s introduced with Missouri Congresswoman Cori Bush intended to guarantee basic utility services for all Americans, while reducing the country’s reliance on fossil fuels.
“We need an energy system that is of, by and for the people — nor corporations seeking the largest possible profit,” Bowman said, in a release. “As long as energy is treated as a commodity — not a right — poor people, workers and communities of color will suffer.”
If passed into law, the bill is intended to fund transitioning the existing power grid into one that’s backed by renewable alternative energy as well as push investor-owned power companies to either end shutoffs for customers who struggle to pay, or find more of their companies falling into public ownership.
The bill is backed by the so-called Squad in Congress — U.S. Reps. Rashida Tlaib, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Ilhan Omar.
City council Speaker Corey Johnson may be looking for other work at the end of the year, but apparently he still has some work to do.
He’s joined forces with several elected officials including public advocate Jumaane Williams to push legislation that would ban New York City from hiring police officers from other jurisdictions who were fired for misconduct, or resigned while being investigated for misconduct.
State Sen. Brian Benjamin will push that a step further by introducing a similar bill in Albany in an effort to make such policy a state one, and not just city.
“All it takes is one bad cop to make a fatal mistake, shatter a family, and destroy the trust people have in all police,” Johnson said, in a release.