Of course, there was no shortage of front groups who are funded by these large, out-of-state energy corporations that control New Jersey's market at yesterday's hearing. Industry-funded front groups who showed up to oppose New Jersey's plan included the New Jersey Energy Coalition, a front group funded by Exelon which was originally intended to protect their Oyster Creek nuke plant. Also on hand to pretend that New Jersey's plan will hurt competition in electricity markets was industry-funded and directed front group Compete Coalition. The Compete Coalition, despite their purported advocacy for competitive markets, is actually working against competition in order to retain market share for their corporate "members," says the American Public Power Association. APPA is a group representing the interests of community-owned electric utilities.
NJ.com has an interesting article demonstrating Compete's third-party propaganda tactics. When asked about their opposition to New Jersey's plan, the two New Jersey-based companies whose names appeared on a letter submitted to the Governor's office by the Coalition said that they were asked to sign it by their energy providers (the big companies funding the Coalition). Neither company knew anything about the controversy or why they were supporting the Coalition's position. Obviously, they didn't write (or even read) the letter before signing on.
Ah, the energy corporations and their front groups... always an entertaining show. When are they going to realize that no one is drinking their koolaid anymore?
It doesn't look like New Jersey is fooled either and they're not backing down. Stay tuned to see how this one plays out.