Developer Admits to Plant Washington Scheme

Guest Blog | March 7, 2012 | Coal, Energy Policy
It’s official: Dean Alford, developer of Plant Washington and spokesman for Power4Georgians (P4G), admitted on the record that he never planned to use the $27-million-plus he’s finagled from customers of Georgia’s Electrical Membership Corporations (EMCs) to actually build a coal-fired power plant. Instead, he would use the millions of dollars he continues to draw from four EMCs to secure state environmental permits, which he would then try to sell — in an unfriendly market. If he can’t sell the permits, he’s already made a substantial paycheck, but customers will be out millions of dollars. Click here to download our explanation of how the money flows to Mr. Alford and other individuals.

Alford made the admission to Cobb EMC at its board meeting last month, according to minutes that were released to members last week. According to the Marietta Daily Journal,

“Mr. Alford … commented that coal is still the backbone of the country and that it is important to have a diversified portfolio of energy. Power4Georgians owns the permits but he stated that P4G never intended to build Plant Washington. He stated P4G’s goal has always been to obtain the permits needed and then sell them to any interested party that could build the plant.”

“Alford’s remarks [during the meeting] that ‘P4G never intended to build Plant Washington’ are likely to further infuriate Cobb EMC’s member-owners, who involuntarily committed $13.5 million toward getting those permits. The power plant was the ‘baby’ of now-indicted ex-Cobb EMC head Dwight Brown and his sidekick Alford, who also served as vice chairman of corporate spinoff Cobb Energy.”

An industry source pointed out to the MDJ the high risk of trying to sell the permit: “As for the argument that the permits could be sold? ‘Good luck,’ our first industry source said. ‘Who would buy those, if Cobb and others are saying they don’t need all that power?’”

In light of this information, Snapping Shoals EMC, Central Georgia EMC, Washington EMC, and Upson EMC ought to immediately end their EMC’s spending on Mr. Alford’s project, and turn to cleaner solutions for any future power needs, including energy efficiency, solar, and other renewable sources. If you are a member (customer) of one of these EMCs, please call your EMC today and demand NOT ONE MORE DOLLAR be spent on Dean Alford’s “project”.

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