Maldonado knocks Newsom’s environmental credentials, while Newsom touts city’s solar program 

Mayor Gavin Newsom knows how to play the campaign game.

After his opponent in the race for lieutenant governor — Abel Maldonado — issued a statement attacking Newsom for his financial ties to the company responsible for the BP oil spill, the mayor made an announcement of his own, perhaps trying to draw the focus back to his green leadership in San Francisco.

On Thursday, Newsom issued a statement announcing that The City’s GoSolarSF program is accepting new applications. The San Francisco Public Utilities Commission is allocating $5 million, of which $2 million will be dedicated for low-income residents who apply.

The remainder of the money — $3 million — will be available for residential and nonprofit organizations.

Since launching in July 2008, GoSolarSF has helped to increase the number of solar installations in San Francisco from 795 to 1,934. It’s also responsible for creating as many as 40 new “green-collar” jobs with local companies, Newsom said.

“GoSolarSF has more than doubled the number of solar installations in our city and created dozens of jobs,” Newsom said. “This program is literally transforming how our homes and businesses generate and consume electricity rooftop by rooftop.”

However, Maldonado’s campaign called Newsom out for not practicing what he preaches. According to recent financial disclosure documents, a blind trust in Newsom's wife's name invested between $10,000 and $100,000 in a TransOcean Inc. bond. That's the company whose ruptured oil rig is responsible for the oil spill.

"The bond was held in the Jennifer Lynn Siebel Trust. The trust was managed and administered by a professional investment management team that had full discretion over her account," a statement by Newsom's office said.

The trust also has an investment in Schulmberger Ltd., the world’s largest oil field services company and Petroleo Brasileiro which plans to make billions in off-shore oil fields, Maldonado’s campaign said.

“Though Gavin claims to oppose off-shore drilling when the cameras are rolling, his bank account has been swelling due to multiple investments in what he calls ‘dirty’ energy companies who make billions of dollars from off-shore drilling,” said Maldonado spokesmen, Brandon Gesicki.

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Erin Sherbert

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