Sparks Fly at Power Plant Meeting

It was a full house at the Regional Water Quality Control Board meeting on Wednesday, where opponents of the controversial South Bay power plant hope to shut down the generators once and for all.

Chula Vista Mayor Cheryl Cox said there are better uses for that bayfront property. Cox and other critics also believe there are other reliable sources for electrical power, so there is no need to keep the South Bay plant open.

A representative from Cal ISO, which operates the state power grid, told the water board that a new power plant in Otay Mesa could be up and running this fall, making it possible to shut down most, but not all, of the South Bay generators. Cal ISO's Robin Smutny-Jones, however, said it is possible that the South Bay plant may be needed for longer.

The water board staff said the permit that allows the plant to operate can be extended for up to five more years. Opponents want members of the water board to overrule that staff decision, though, and let the permit expire in November.

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