4.11 PUBLIC SERVICES

 

SETTING

REGIONAL SETTING

SDG&E owns and operates facilities in various jurisdictions throughout southern California. Public services, such as fire and police protection, are provided to SDG&E facilities by local cities and communities within these jurisdictions.

SDG&E provides its own security services to the power plants through its corporate security office. For incidents that cannot be handled by SDG&Eís security personnel, SDG&E requests assistance from local law enforcement agencies.

SDG&E relies on local fire departments to respond to emergencies such as fires, hazardous materials incidents, and medical emergencies at its power plants.

The operation and construction of SDG&E facilities require permits from a number of regulatory and permitting agencies. New construction, modifications, or installation of buildings and facilities are subject to local city and county ordinances and permit requirements.

LOCAL SETTING

Fire Protection

Encina Power Plant

The City of Carlsbad Fire Department provides fire services to the Encina generating facility. The Carlsbad Fire Department currently has 6 fire stations, 82 firefighters, and 4 additional personnel (Balch, 1998).

South Bay Power Plant

The City of Chula Vista Fire Department provides fire service to the South Bay Power Plant. The Chula Vista Fire Department has 6 stations with approximately 80 firefighters and 8 additional personnel (Hardiman, 1998).

Division Substation CT

The City of San Diego Fire Department provides fire service to the Division Substation. The San Diego Fire Department has 43 stations with approximately 900 firefighters, 150 medical transport personnel, 150 lifeguards, and 100 additional personnel. The City plans to build one additional fire station next year (Burner, 1998).

El Cajon Substation CT

Fire protection for the substation is provided by the City of El Cajon Fire Department. The department has 4 stations with approximately 67 firefighters and 4 additional personnel.

Kearny Construction and Operation Center CTs

Fire protection is provided by the City of San Diego Fire Department (see discussion for Division Substation).

Miramar Yard CTs

Fire protection for Miramar Yard is provided by one Federal Fire Department and one U.S. Marine fire unit. The Federal Fire Department has 12 firefighters and 1 fire prevention officer. The Marine unit has 25 firefighters per shift. The Federal Fire Department plans to construct an additional fire station at this site in the near future.

North Island Naval Air Station CTs

Fire protection is provided by the Federal Fire Department. The Federal Fire Department at North Island has 2 stations, 16 firefighters, and 4 additional personnel.

Naval Station CT

Fire protection at the Naval Station is provided by the Federal Fire Department. The department has 2 stations and staffs 38 firefighters, which includes 6 engineers and 6 captains. The department also employs 3 fire inspectors (Alameda, 1998).

Naval Training Center CT

Fire protection for the Naval Training Center is provided by the San Diego Fire Department (see Division Substation).

24th Street Terminal Refueling Facility

Fire protection for the 24th Street Terminal is provided by the National City Fire Department. The department currently has 2 fire stations and employs 36 firefighters, 3 commanders, 1 chief, and 1 battalion chief (Kimball, 1998).

Police Protection

Encina Power Plant

The Carlsbad Police Department provides police services to the Encina Power Plant. The Carlsbad Police Department has a total of 124 employees, of which 90 are sworn officers. The department currently has 54 patrol vehicles (Hawks, 1998).

South Bay Power Plant

Police service for the South Bay Power Plant is provided by the Chula Vista Police Department, which has 179 sworn officers, 20 reserve/volunteer officers, and 87 full-time non-sworn support personnel. The department currently has 122 police vehicles, which includes marked and unmarked cars, motorcycles, and parking scooters (Hunter, 1998).

Division Substation CT

Police service for the Division Substation is provided by the San Diego Police Department, which has 2,007 sworn officers and approximately 616 full-time personnel. The department currently has 600 police vehicles and 40 motorcycles (Kaye, 1998).

El Cajon Substation CT

Police protection for the substation is provided by the El Cajon Police Department. The El Cajon Police Department currently has one main station and two satellite stations. The Department employs 142 sworn officers. A total of 100 patrol vehicles are available to the department (Wood, 1998).

Kearny Construction and Operation Center CTs

Police protection for the Kearny Construction and Operation Center is provided by the San Diego Police Department (see discussion for Division Substation).

Miramar Yard CTs

Police protection for Miramar Yard is provided by the U.S. Marine Corps Military Police Department, which currently has 140 officers. A total of 7 patrol vehicles and 20 department vehicles are available to the department (Mowry, 1998).

North Island Naval Air Station CTs

The Department of Defense Police Department provides police services to the North Island Naval Air Station. The CT is located within the confines of the Navy base. For security reasons the Defense Police Department does not release information on security assets.

Naval Station CT

Police protection for the Naval Station is provided by the Department of Defense Police Department. The Department of Defense Police Department currently has 140 civilian sworn officers and 60 military police officers. A total of 14 patrol vehicles are available to the department (Ponce, 1998).

Naval Training Center CT

Police protection is provided by the City of San Diego Police Department, as described in the Division Substation discussion.

24th Street Terminal Refueling Facility

Police protection for the 24th Street Terminal is provided by the National City Police Department. The police department currently has approximately 81 sworn officers, 35 additional personnel, and 60 patrol vehicles (DiCerchio, 1998).

Schools

Encina Power Plant

Three school districts serve the City of Carlsbad in the vicinity of the Encina Power Plant. Carlsbad Unified School District has seven elementary schools, one middle/junior high school, one high school, and one continuation school. Student enrollment for the 1997/1998 school year was 7,899 students, which is near district capacity. The Encinitas Union School District has nine elementary schools. Enrollment for the 1997/1998 school year was estimated at 5,400 students. The Encinitas School District is currently at 100 percent capacity. The San Diego Union High School District has three junior high schools and two high schools, and one high school academy. Only one junior high school is not at capacity.

South Bay Power Plant

The City of Chula Vista has two school districts in the vicinity of the South Bay Power Plant. The Chula Vista Elementary School District has 36 elementary schools and no high schools. Enrollment for 1997/1998 was 20,925 students, which is 100 percent of capacity. The district plans to add one elementary school every year over the next five years. Sweetwater Unified School District has seven middle schools (7-8 grades), three junior high schools (7-9 grades), and ten high schools. Enrollment as of October 1997 was 31,760 students. All schools are currently over capacity. The Sweetwater District plans to open one middle school for the 1998/1999 school year and two high schools and one middle school in the next five years (Forsyth, 1998).

Division Substation CT

The Division Substation is within the City of San Diego, which is served by the San Diego Unified School District. The district has 121 elementary schools, 23 middle schools, and 16 high schools. Forty-one percent of these schools are operating over capacity. In addition, the San Diego School District operates one continuation school; one creative/performing arts school; one science, math, and computer school; and one school for the handicapped. District enrollment for the 1997/1998 school year was 135,743 students. The district plans to open four new elementary schools for the 1998/1999 school year. One middle school and one high school will open for the 1999/2000 school year (Hintzman, 1998).

El Cajon Substation CT

The City of El Cajon is served by two school districts in the vicinity of the El Cajon Substation. The El Cajon Union School District has 22 elementary schools and 5 middle schools. Student population for the 1997/1998 school year was approximately 19,000 students. The El Cajon School District is currently near capacity. The Grossmont High School District has 10 high schools. Student enrollment for the 1997/1998 school year was approximately 22,000 students. The Grossmont School District is currently over capacity and is planning to open a new high school for the 1999/2000 school year.

Kearny Construction and Operation Center CTs

The Kearny Construction and Operation Center is within the San Diego Unified School District. The district serves the education needs of the City of San Diego, as described above under the Division Substation discussion.

Miramar Yard CTs

Similar to the Division Substation and the Kearny Construction and Operation Center, the San Diego Unified School District provides school services in the vicinity of Miramar Yard.

North Island Naval Air Station CTs

The North Island Naval Air Station is within the Coronado Unified School District. The district currently has two elementary schools, one middle school, and one high school. The school district operated at full capacity for the 1997/1998 school year, with enrollment at 2,692 students.

Naval Station and Naval Training Center CTs

The Naval Station and Naval Training Center, both located in the City of San Diego are served by the San Diego Unified School District, as described above under the Division Substation discussion.

24th Street Terminal Refueling Facility

The 24th Street Terminal is within the City of National City, which is served by two school districts. The National School District has 10 elementary schools; current enrollment is 5,500 students. All schools are currently operating at capacity. The district has no plans to build any new schools (McGinley, 1998). National City is also served by the Sweetwater Union High School District. Sweetwater Unified School District has seven middle schools (grades 7Ė8), three junior high schools (grades 7Ė9), and 10 high schools. Enrollment as of October 1997 was 31,760 students. All schools are currently over capacity. The Sweetwater District plans to open one middle school for the 1998/1999 school year and two high schools and one middle school in the next five years.

CHECKLIST ISSUES

a) FIRE PROTECTION

According to the fire protection agencies, the project would not result in new or altered demand for fire protection services. However, if the new owners operated the various plants at higher levels, employment may increase, requiring a minimal addition in personnel for fire protection and medical emergency services from the fire departments. Any such added demand would not be substantial.

Conclusion

The projectís effect on fire protection services would be less than significant.

b) POLICE PROTECTION

According to the police services agencies, the divestiture of the SDG&E power plants and CT facilities would not alter or increase the demand for police protection. Crime incidents such as vandalism and theft are unlikely to occur at the sites due to restricted access, the types of activities occurring on the site (power generation and transmission), and low employee density. SDG&E currently provides private security at its generating plants. However, a new owner may or may not elect to provide private security services. If a new owner did not continue private security services, the number of calls to the local police could increase, but it is not anticipated that the increase would be to a degree that would result in a physical impact. In any event, any increase in demand for police protection services for the plants is likely to be low and to be accommodated by existing police resources. The impact would not be significant.

Conclusion

The projectís effect on police protection services would be less than significant.

c) SCHOOLS

A slight increase in plant employment may occur if a new owner increased operations at a facility. However, the residences of new employees and therefore the school districts for their children cannot be anticipated. Nonetheless, the impacts to specific school districts are expected to be minimal due to the low number of potential new employees.

Conclusion

The projectís effect on school facilities and services would be less than significant.

d) MAINTENANCE OF PUBLIC FACILITIES

Under divestiture, the new power plant owners will be responsible for paying all applicable property taxes upon transfer of ownership (i.e., divestiture), based on a new valuation of the power plant. The State Board of Equalization (BOE) has currently taken the position that the transfer of ownership does not change the utility property tax procedures as set forth by Article XIII, Section 19 of the California Constitution. Unless the BOE changes its policy, the BOE will continue to have the exclusive legal responsibility for assessing the property tax of utility property and assets, regardless of whether the owner is a public utility company or private entity (Lee, 1998).

Maintenance of public facilities in the cities of the divestiture sites and in San Diego County could be affected if the project were to result in reductions in the amounts of property taxes distributed to the affected public service entities. In the short term, a reduction in property tax revenues could occur if the market value established during the auction process were lower than a plantís book value. The amount of annual property tax revenues allocated to service entities within each county would be determined annually by that countyís Board of Supervisors. Therefore, any changes in apportionment of property tax revenues within San Diego County cannot be precisely determined. However, it is not reasonably foreseeable that divestiture of the plants will cause property tax decreases.

There is indeed no reason to believe that the plants will be sold for amounts less than the current assessed values upon which property taxes are based. If this were to occur for SDG&E properties, property taxes would increase instead of decrease. At the current time, given the fact that the identity of the new owners is not known, any increases or decreases in tax revenues cannot be precisely estimated and would be at best highly speculative. Furthermore, even if divestiture did lead to a decrease in property tax revenue, such decrease could only be considered significant if it were so substantial that the maintenance of public facilities and provision of public services would be diminished or curtailed and if such changes would lead to adverse physical effects. This chain of events is not foreseeable. For all of these reasons, the maintenance of public facilities is not expected to be effected by the divestiture of the facilities.

Conclusion

The power plants sold through previous divestiture projects were sold at significantly higher prices than the book value of the plants. Therefore, significant reductions in property tax revenues in San Diego County are not anticipated as a consequence of the project. Also, because San Diego County has a large and diverse property tax base, tax revenues from SDG&E facilities account for only a small percentage of total property tax revenues generated within the county. For these reasons, the project will have no impact on the maintenance of public services.

e) OTHER GOVERNMENT SERVICES

A new Oversight Board proposed by the state to oversee the Independent System Operator (ISO) and Power Exchange (PX) would be a new governmental agency that would provide government services. The Oversight Board would report to the state governor. Alternatively, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) has issued an order mandating the ISO and PX to be under FERC control. If FERC ultimately gains control, there would be no need for the Oversight Board, and thus no new government agency. The new ISO and the PX are non-profit organizations, not government agencies, with operations/management activities similar to a public utility.

This new regulatory structure would shift regulatory authority over divested sites and facilities to local jurisdictions. A local agency would become the "lead agency" under the California Environmental Quality Act for future site improvements. Likewise, permitting activities related to site planning, site improvements, building construction, and hazardous materials handling would be processed by the local permitting authorities (i.e., various city or county departments).

These changes, however, would be a consequence of restructuring, and not divestiture. Therefore, there are no reasonably foreseeable impacts on these local government services as a result of divestiture.

Conclusion

As is the case for the Maintenance of Public Facilities section above, there are no foreseeable significant changes in other government services as a consequence of the project. Therefore, the effect of the project on the provision of other government services is less than significant.

_________________________


REFERENCES ó Public Services

Adams, Donna, Officer, City of El Cajon Fire Prevention Office, telephone communication, July 29, 1998.

Alameda, Wayne, Fire Inspector, Federal Fire Department, 32nd Street Naval Station, telephone communication, July 30, 1998.

Balch, Coleen, Officer, City of Carlsbad Fire Prevention Office, telephone communication, July 29, 1998.

Blackburn, Debbie, Secretary, Educational Services, Encinitas Union School District, telephone communication, August 3, 1998.

Burner, Mike, Chief, City of San Diego Fire Department, telephone communication, August 5, 1998.

DiCerchio, Skip, Police Chief, City of National City Police Department, telephone communication, July 30, 1998.

Egida, Bill, Assistant Chief, North Island Naval Air Station Federal Fire Department, telephone communication, July 29, 1998.

Forsyth, Susan, Administrative Secretary, Planning, Sweetwater Unified School District, telephone communication, August 3, 1998.

Hardiman, Jim, Chief, City of Chula Vista Fire Department, telephone communication, July 29, 1998.

Hawks, Jim, Captain, City of Carlsbad Police Department, telephone communication, July 29, 1998.

Hecht, Jaime, Accounts Payable Representative, Coronado Unified School District, telephone communication, August 3, 1998.

Helvie, Mary, Public Information Officer, Chula Vista Elementary School District, telephone communication, August 3, 1998.

Hintzman, Jan, Acting Director, Facilities Planning Department, San Diego Unified School District, telephone communication, August 3, 1998.

Hone, Leona, Director of Long Range Planning, El Cajon Valley Union School District, telephone communication, August 3, 1998.

Hunter, Don, Lieutenant, City of Chula Vista Police Department, telephone communication, August 5, 1998.

Kaye, Chuck, Officer, City of San Diego Police Department, telephone communication, August 5, 1998.

Kimball, Randy, Fire Chief, City of National City Fire Department, telephone communication, July 30, 1998.

Kuklinski, John, Inspector, Miramar Yard Federal Fire Department, telephone communication, July 29, 1998.

Lee, Octavio, Manager, Valuation Department, Energy and Communication Division, California Board of Equalization, telephone communication, August 26, 1998.

Ma, Steve, District Facilities Planner, San Diegnito Union School District, telephone communication, August 3, 1998.

McGinley, Carolyn, Secretary to the Superintendent, National School District Administrative Office, telephone communication, August 3, 1998.

Mowry, Corporal, USMC-MP, telephone communication, July 30, 1998.

Navratil, Joy, Secretary to Associate Superintendent, Grossmont High School District, telephone communication, August 3, 1998.

Ponce, Corporal, USMC-MP, telephone communication, July 30, 1998.

Tokorckeck, Jan, Administrative Secretary for Business Services, Carlsbad Unified School District Administrative Services, telephone communication, August 3, 1998.

Wood, Larry, Lieutenant, Watch Commander, City of El Cajon Police Department, telephone communication, July 29, 1998.

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