The city administration Tuesday firmly ruled out any effort to purchase Hawaiian Electric Company.
The purchase had been promoted by environmentalists and other critics of the Nextera-HECO merger. They said public ownership would lead to lower rates and more aggressive pursuit of alternate energy.
But on Tuesday, the city's managing director told the City Council that it would not even participate in the discussion.
Managing Director Roy Amemiya said the city can't afford to pay more than $4 billion to buy HECO and isn't interested in letting the discussion get in the way of more urgent priorities, including building rail, improving water and sewer systems, and maintaining city services.
The council deferred further discussion until the new year.