Difficulties for outsiders as IID managers


letters to the editor




Several years ago I discussed why outsiders can have difficulties as IID managers. More than a decade later I can still see problems.


Currently, a consultant has been given control of the nerve center of IID’S Energy Department including ability to fire IID employees and hire their own, thus maintaining continuity for their services until they choose otherwise, or are forced out. Like any consultant they are profit motivated without ties to the ratepayers.


A recent Desert Review online comment was about the consultant being able to walk both sides of the street. What is referred to there is that the consultant will be able to represent independent power producers who want to connect to IID- and can approve these connections since they also represent IID. There are no checks & balances to protect the public.


In addition, what is potentially even more alarming from a checks & balances standpoint, the consultant will represent IID at all local State, Regional Federal and other utility and energy meetings – all coordinating meetings, including San Diego, Edison, West Connect, CAISO, FERC, NERC, WECC, LOS ANGELES, and all other utilities with which IID may do business. This means they will not only be attending meetings to decide the future of IID in the industry, but will also be able to filter information to be shared with IID. In addition, they will have unique inside information when dealing with developers/generators that they represent. Thus, the consultant and the developers/generators that the consultant represents could benefit on projects for which both have financial interest – a situation that is clearly a fox guarding the hen house scenario.


Shorty Hickingbottom


  1. I understand that certain current and former employees of Imperial County are trying to do exactly what they spent years and hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars on fighting against in relation to certain properties held by ZGlobal. Perhaps there are conflicts of interest involved in those dealings that should be examined.

    • Understand that Fair Political Practices Commission has been contacted. That is going to be messy, but will drill down on why a department with lowest rates had to have its senior management employees and engineers suddenly removed and company handed to a for profit outside contractor.

    • This is a mess. Nobody know what they are supposed to do and are siting around with heads own. These ZGlobal guys are a joke & don’t know what they are doing. They are giving jobs to non qualified at IID and ZGlobal. GOB – who you know again. Those fired were experienced, licensed electrical engineers. With them it was fun to go to work. It will be hard if not impossible to put the pieces of IID back together and have lowest rates again.

  2. What was original scope for ZGlobal and what is it now? What are they fixing? How were energy employees not doing their jobs if they were doing it better than any other energy company by maintaining lowest rates? Esteban Martinez is the latest energy engineer to leave IID for a better job at another company – transmission manager, another big loss for IID.

  3. IID has maintained the lowest energy and water rates as the 6th largest utility, and IID managers are leaving for better jobs. Why is this consultant/promoter really replacing energy management at all control points in the energy department? What the heck is really going on? FTM

  4. Complaints do sound legit. Remember similar problems with Beck? Hard to get rid of & not go bankrupt. If IID managers were so bad, how did they give IID the lowest water & energy rates? Now outsiders manage all control points – their goal is to make a profit for ZGlobal. And they are accomplishing that! Goal for IID employees was lowest water & power rates and they did it! Seems that only one director understands that and is not buying what the Z Promoter is selling.

  5. ZENERGY and outside consultants don’t need to purchase land. They get lucrative contracts from the rate payers of IID. $37 million dollar contract is a big one for ABATTI and zenergy

  6. Shorty has exposed 2 cans of worms for our control and low rates – ‘giving away the keys to the farm”, and “license to steal”. Fortunately, Fair Labor Practices were set up because utilities are notoriously badly managed and the public should be protected — IID is worse than most lately it appears, and no exception. Need investigation NOW before the cows out of the barn & gone forever.

  7. Sounds like there is lot’s of legit complaining about this issue. Question is, do those who complain have any power to change things? Nope. There is a certain group who can really stir the Kool Aid if they wanted to…………Farmer’s!!!!!! Like my Father would tell me, “Nothing shuts up people better than money.”

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