Business owners on the 1100 block of State Street are celebrating a small victory after Southern California Edison rescinded its plans to temporarily shut off power to the block Thursday, June 13, during business hours, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
When the outage was first announced, Drew Cuddy, business owner of Satellite, a farm-to-table restaurant at 1117 State Street, remarked, “State Street is finally coming back after morale has been low for so long. It’s really a lot for them to ask of businesses right now, especially in the beginning of our busy season.”
After receiving inquiries and complaints of business losses, Edison rescheduled the outage to the evening/nighttime hours on a later date, according to Mary Ann Milbourn, media advisor for Edison. In addition to the 1100 block of State, the company also canceled three other downtown scheduled outages affecting nearly 1,000 customers between Olive and Bath streets, and bordered by Micheltorena and Figueroa streets. As Millbourn described the outage area, reporters realized it included Independent offices. Those, too, are being rescheduled for evening hours.
The outage is listed online as “routine maintenance,” which is as much information as was given to affected businesses in the email notifications. Millbourn explained the work would install a network of underground cables.
The city’s frustrations with Edison have gone back several years — as when the Tony Bennett show at the Granada Theatre was canceled at the last minute due to an outage in 2014, prompting firefighters to assist many elderly patrons out of the dark building. Or in 2015, when the City Council gave the company the third degree after the city experienced 33 downtown outages the year prior — costing local businesses hundreds of thousands of dollars.
For now, it appears Thursday will continue with “business as usual,” at least for those who make their living on the 1100 block of State Street.