Briefing for Press Conference, December 11, 1981
Briefing for Press Conference, December 11, 1981. Regarding the Utility Commission, holiday plans, governor's race, government employment reduction,
Texas. Public Utility Commission
Texas A&M University
Cushing Memorial Library and Archives
"Governor William P. Clements, Jr. Official State Papers, 2nd Term, 1987-1991"
State Papers Addendum | 2nd term
Texas State library and archives commission
Clements Texas Papers
• Press Conference, Friday, December 11,1981 --You will get some questions today about the Utility Commission decision to grant Bell Telephone Company a S243.7 million rate increase, largest ever awarded a Texas utility operation and the fifth in five years. This is the same level recommended by the PUC staff. An appropriate comment would be that the decision is strictly one for the commission, and the Governor has no veto power. The issue was studied at length, and intensive hearings were held. As a telephone subscriber, would like, as everybody else, to avoid paying higher charges, but rate increases are inevitable as the cost of everythina else rises. Staff recommendations for local measured service--individual call charges for local service--were rejected, but the commission staff was directed to work with Bell to do a statewide survey on measured service. Bell will continue to press for the local call charges. You may be asked about this. --The rate issue will lead to the question about when you will name a PUC replacement for Garrett Morris. I understand you have discussed this with appointments today, and that the answer is you are about ready to make the announcement, and that it will come probably before the Christmas holidays. (On November 13, you said in a press conference that you had someone in mind for the appointment, and that you would wait on the announcement until after the Bell rate hearing docket was concluded.) --In anticipation of questions about your Christmas plans, you may want to make a brief announcement of your holiday plans at the start of the press conference. (Actually, there will be one more press conference before the holidays). --There will probably be several questions about the governor's race--McKnight's $750,000 fund raiser at Billy Bob's (with Willie Nelson, who said he didn't know much about politics. He's for Peyton because they are personal friends, which is fine), Armstrong's announcement,White's near announcement (probably Monday). --Bob Armstrona has a press release out today criticizing you for our mailing of the letter and supporting material to Texas editors and government reporters explaining our method of computing employee reduction figures. Answer: this has nothing to do with political campaigning or campaign "promises." The information on employee reduction was passed along to the press to set the record straight. It was developed weeks ago. (David Dean reviewed the material, and said there was nothing wrong with mailing it at state expense).