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Public Utilities, Second Edition

Old Problems, New Challenges

David E. McNabb

A thoroughly updated introduction to the current issues and challenges facing managers and administrators in the investor and publicly owned utility industry, this engaging volume addresses management concerns in five sectors of the utility industry: electric power, natural gas, water, wastewater systems and public transit.
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Chapter 17: Public utility management ethics

David E. McNabb


Ethical problems in public and private organizations run the gamut from sexual harassment to misappropriation or outright embezzlement of millions and billions of dollars. Ethics breakdowns are loudly pointed out by the press as examples of the poor quality of public servants in general. Examples include newspaper stories of the alleged sale of presidential pardons and diplomatic passports, charges that a town mayor and nine others misappropriated $10 million in taxpayer money; and the conviction of a mayor on charges of laundering drug money and accepting bribes from racketeers. Public utilities and other businesses that serve the utility industry are not immune to allegations of ethical misconduct, as the example of arrests of energy company managers as a result of misconduct in the California energy crisis demonstrates.

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