The Cal Anderson outlet: No longer good for tattoo guns, cell phones, laptops, electric razors, and more.
We heard a rumor of this in the comments, sent trusty intern Joseph Staten out to confirm, and... it's true. Our beloved Cal Anderson outlet has been shut down. And it sounds like its fate was sealed long before we started trumpeting its usefulness.
Parks Department spokeswoman Dewey Potter explains:
The grounds crew noticed a lot of private use of it recently, so the crew chief put in a work order and it was turned off on June 4. The crew can turn it on for their purposes and for special events.
The public ultimately pays for this power, and as Parks’ budget continues to shrink (more than $12 million since mid-2010), private use of electricity intended for a specific use will ultimately have an impact on park operations. We won’t know the magnitude of that impact until we examine upcoming City Light bills and compare them to bills for the same period a year ago.
Potter also said she doubts that charging cell phones and laptops in park outlets amounts to much of a drain, but she draws the line at "personal appliances and such." For example, Potter once saw people set up in Woodland Park with a mini-fridge and a television plugged into the public power outlet.