Join The Mayor’s Holiday Celebration and Tree Lighting
November 27, 2011

Houston, it’s time to get into the holiday spirit.

Mayor Annise Parker, Santa, Frosty the Snowman, Mrs. Gingerbread, along with officials from Reliant Energy and the Downtown District, gathered recently to announce details of  the city’s annual holiday celebration and tree lighting.

The event is scheduled to take place on Friday, December 2 at City Hall from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.

The fun event will feature a towering 67-foot White Fir holiday tree, along with Grammy Award-winning entertainers, Diane Schuur and 2003 American Idol winner Ruben Studdard.

There will also be pictures with Santa, gospel music and a toy drive benefiting the Salvation Army Greater Houston Area Command.

I covered the news conference and of course, I had to have my picture taken with my favorite Christmastime characters.

For more information about the event, please visit or

Electric Companies Are Asking You to Conserve Energy
August 9, 2011

Almost everyone I know has received a letter from his or her electric company. A personal email asking for our assistance to help conserve energy.

I received one from Reliant Energy tonight. I’m posting it below.

It makes sense. We’ve had record heat and record usage.  However, I wonder if Reliant would give me some assistance to pay my bill? It’s high.

Your Assistance is Needed to Conserve Electricity

Dear Mary Benton,

The Texas heat has reached record temperatures this summer and is pushing the state’s power generation resources to the limit. In hopes of preventing rotating outages, The Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT) is asking everyone in Texas to do our part to conserve electricity, especially during peak hours of 3 p.m. to 7 p.m.

It’s as easy as following three simple steps:

  • Turn thermostats up two or more degrees and close blinds or drapes.
  • Before leaving home, set your thermostat to 85°F and turn off lights, TVs, computers, fans and other electrical equipment.
  • Run dishwashers, washers, dryers and pool pumps during off-peak hours, preferably after 7 p.m.

We care about your well-being and hope that, with our combined efforts, we can help conserve energy and prevent any required rotating outages. For more tips on how to conserve energy, visit You can also learn more about what ERCOT is doing to keep up with the daily electricity demand in Texas at

Thank you for being a Reliant customer, and for partnering with us to conserve electricity and help prevent rotating outages. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter for updates on the latest conservation efforts.


Bill Clayton
Vice President, Customer Care