Greetings from the Mayor’s office, Hope as you read this that your electricity is back on or soon to be. Linda and I have been without power since about midnight Sunday. The city offices may be closed but city workers have been putting in 12-18 hour days. Linda and I made a temporary home and makeshift office at a local hotel. I have been on the phone non-stop regarding the power outages. I want to thank Rep. Guillen for being so responsive to us. Currently, he is helping us both with the outages and locally with a fuel shortage. I know he will along with other state representatives be questioning ERCOT during the legislative session.
I had an email from AEP who enlightened me on why some residents locally had power while others did not. One of the reasons stated was that if you live in an all electric house you probably experienced the longest of service interruptions. Those that have 50 percent gas and 50 percent electricity did not see long periods of outage if any at all according to AEP.
ERCOT ordered a certain amount of megawatt usage. So, if your home uses a certain amount of megawatts, your electricity was to be turned off. I would think that this pertains, for example, to people who have all electric houses. AEP said that outages will continue until Thursday evening or sometime on Friday, and that’s all they can tell us. They cannot tell us when our electricity is going to be restored. And obviously, that’s a main concern.
I want to especially take time to thank our City Manager Johnny Huizar for his expertise in water works. Everyone from the city manager on down through our newest employee have done such an outstanding job. I am really proud of them as are the other council members. They don’t work for us. They work with us and it has been such a pleasure. They have been putting in as I said 12-18 hour days because we have had a lot of water breaks due to the cold weather. The water works department respond as well as the fire department and the police department. I would say 90% of our city force is on call 24 hours a day. And, they’re doing a wonderful job.
As of right now, we are not under a boil water notice for Pleasanton. I keep receiving calls regarding this matter. What separates us from those that have the boil water notice is that many years ago Pleasanton started backing up our water wells with generators. So when the power goes off these generators kick in and that prevents water loss. This is all due to planning that was done years ago. Having a city manager that started in the water department and worked his way up through public works is amazing. He has so much knowledge about water and about the city’s infrastructure. Johnny is very valuable to the city.
Money is tight due to the pandemic but my goal is for us to get a generator for the Civic Center. I would have loved to have seen the Civic Center turned into a warming center. However, it did not stay fully powered during the storm. I am so thankful to the local churches for filling that gap and providing a safe and warm place for residents.
I would like to close by saying that in the midst of this storm let’s not forget that we are still in the midst of a pandemic. Please continue to social distance and wear your masks. Hopefully, the city will be receiving more of the vaccine soon and distribution will go smoothly and quickly. Until then, know we are working for you. We will keep you updated through the City of Pleasanton website, Facebook page and the Pleasanton Express.