People Begin Living Without Electricity and Water in California





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I couldn't find statistics for local utility shut offs in my area, but I knew we would start to see more and more of this.

Houses everywhere are going vacant. People don't say goodbye, they don't leave a number, they just disappear. With their disappearance we add another vacant house to the street. But families living in housing without utilities is a new sight for me to behold. I spoke recently with a rep from So Cal Edison who, full time contacts residence who have had their electricity turned off due to non payment. She has a negotiator sent in and they work on a reduced payment. It's amazing to me, that now, it is becoming acceptable in California to camp out in your home.

People are losing their homes, losing their cars and losing their dignity. How are we going to afford kids clothes and school supplies for the coming year? How can we expect families to pay for all these additional costs when the economy is in the shape it in. I ask myself this everyday.

http://www.gazette.com/articles/upwar...
Requests for help paying utility bills surge upward
Comments 19 | Recommend 1
Light switches, furnaces and water faucets aren't the typical gauges of economic health, but at Pikes Peak United Way's 2-1-1 call center, they tell a tale of people who continue to struggle to pay their bills in a weak economy.

According to a report released Monday by the 2-1-1 Information and Referral Hotline, requests for utility bill assistance in the fiscal year ending June 30 jumped 20 percent from the previous year, outstripping requests for help with food and rent.

"That's by far the biggest spike in looking at data year-to-year," said 2-1-1 Center Manager Jessica Johnson-Simmons. "I would guess it would have something to do with recent utility hikes that have gone into effect, but it's also a case of clients just getting too overwhelmed with their...

http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/2009...
I feel horrible; I know my kids must feel horrible," said Maria Schultheis, who lives in the house with her husband and twin teenage sons. "I'm humiliated because I never had to live like this."

The town water department shut off the Schultheises' water about a month ago after the family fell behind on payments on a $1,700 overdue bill. John Schultheis -- a computer programmer who has been out of work for three years -- watched in disbelief as town workers turned off the water valve near the curb of his three-bedroom bungalow in a quiet middle-class neighborhood in the Lake Hiawatha section of Parsippany.

As the recession continues, utility companies say a growing number of New Jerseyans are falling behind on their electric, gas and water bills. For many, a flood of emergency funding in state and federal aid programs -- coupled with a state-imposed moratorium on utility shut-offs during the winter months -- has helped keep the lights on and the water flowing over the last few months.

But, with much of the state money gone and the winter moratorium ended, utility officials say more and more families like the Schultheises may be losing their electricity, gas or water service in the coming months.

"I do expect shut-off activity to increase the second part of the year," said Victor Viscomi, PSE&G's director of billing and revenue operations. "Some of the emergency-payment assistance money is drying up."

PSE&G, the state's largest utility, has seen a 10 percent increase in families behind on their payments, compared with this time last year, Viscomi said. Many of those are households that had never

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Comment by Nikki on January 31, 2011 at 9:38pm

Another thing they do is say that unemployment went down when the decrease in unemployment is actually because many people quit looking for work, not because there were jobs.  Yes, they definitely cook the numbers so that it doesn't appear to be as bad as it really is.

You've got some good ideas, Mary - glad you're prepared.

Comment by Mary on January 31, 2011 at 9:24pm

I heard back in September? California unemployment was more like 22%. Now I hear it more like 30%. I also read how many states fudge their numbers by counting jobs promised to come in that quarter by companies even if this never happen the jobs are still counted.  Then as we all know many people are never counted as unemployed. Here in South Dakota it's called a right to work state, which just means you can be laid off or fired for no reason and still not able to collect unemployment. So those people are not counted. Very few unions here to protect the people and if you even whisper the word "Union" you will be quickly fired.  Sure we have a supposed very low unemployment rate 4-5% but most jobs are only part time at a very low wage and our cost of living is just as high as California. Food, housing fuel etc. I was blessed. If God haven't been there for me things would be very hard. But I found a abandoned home that still needs a LOT of work, but I bought it for just the price of the land. It's paid off now, no mortgage. Yeah. So I don't have to worry about losing my home. I told my kids when things get very bad as I expect it will. Worst than people can imagine, and there might not be power, or water etc, but at least I have a roof over my head and if they need a place shelter it's here.  I have almost a acre so if anyone needed a place to pitch a tent or a camper they could. I would suggest a camper though as our winters are VERY cold. sometime -55 below is not unheard of. 

Anyway I am seriously considering a wood cook stove to put in the kitchen. Like I said I expect things to get much worst.

I also buy large candles from the thrift shop and have a large stock of them now not to mention the old fashion hurricane lamps. 

The bubble has burst.

Another thing I read was when the government bailed out the banks that in reality it was so bad ALL the major banks except one were on the verge of collapse back in '08. That's why they really gave then all that money. Then with the mess of the mortgage loans being sold and resold who know who really own the loans. Could be china far as anyone knows. 

I know I am going on but everyone need to prepare for the worst. 

Comment by Tara on January 31, 2011 at 12:59am

Unfortunately, these are the signs of the times. I'm so grateful that my family has a roof over our head, employment, food, clothing and a pretty decent life I might add. We don't live the life of Riley but we do OK and that is alright with me. 

I do see much more suffering all around me though. The unemployment issue is still a big problem where I live and there's little hope that it will turn around. Everything pivots off of people having jobs. When many don't have jobs, are on un-enjoyment, working only part-time or are working lower paying jobs, that means people aren't spending money. And many of them don't have enough money to make ends meet, they eventually loose their way of life and sometime their homes. It's really sad but true. 

Comment by Nikki on January 30, 2011 at 9:37pm

Thanks, Mary.  Yet the voters in Calif reelected the same old politicians and failed to pass Prop 19, when will they open their eyes to what is happening all around them?

PS Here's how to fix the Youtube embed problem, I fixed this one for you.

http://snardfarker.ning.com/profiles/blogs/update-posting-youtube-v...
Comment by Mary on January 30, 2011 at 8:37pm

 

You Never see this on the news. Gee I sure am glad it is getting better RPFL On what planet?

 

 

Comment by Nikki on January 30, 2011 at 8:22pm
I'm in Cal, Larry.  It's not looking very golden anymore...but many other states are having problems as well.  I would like to get a job a job too...but not much available.

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