Article 7. Research, Environmental, And Low-income Funds of California Public Utilities Code >> Division 1. >> Part 1. >> Chapter 2.3. >> Article 7.
(a) To ensure that the funding for the programs described in
subdivision (b) and Section 382 are not commingled with other
revenues, the commission shall require each electrical corporation to
identify a separate rate component to collect the revenues used to
fund these programs. The rate component shall be a nonbypassable
element of the local distribution service and collected on the basis
(b) The commission shall allocate funds collected pursuant to
subdivision (a), and any interest earned on collected funds, to
programs that enhance system reliability and provide in-state
benefits as follows:
(1) Cost-effective energy efficiency and conservation activities.
(2) Public interest research and development not adequately
provided by competitive and regulated markets.
(3) In-state operation and development of existing and new and
emerging eligible renewable energy resources, as defined in Section
(c) The Public Utilities Commission shall order the respective
electrical corporations to collect and spend these funds at the
levels and for the purposes required in Section 399.8.
(d) Each electrical corporation shall allow customers to make
voluntary contributions through their utility bill payments as either
a fixed amount or a variable amount to support programs established
pursuant to paragraph (3) of subdivision (b). Funds collected by
electrical corporations for these purposes shall be forwarded in a
timely manner to the appropriate fund as specified by the commission.
(a) No later than July 15, 2003, the commission shall
establish policies and procedures by which any party, including, but
not limited to, a local entity that establishes a community choice
aggregation program, may apply to become administrators for
cost-effective energy efficiency and conservation programs
established pursuant to Section 381. In determining whether to
approve an application to become administrators and subject to an
aggregator's right to elect to become an administrator pursuant to
subdivision (f), the commission shall consider the value of program
continuity and planning certainty and the value of allowing
competitive opportunities for potentially new administrators. The
commission shall weigh the benefits of the party's proposed program
to ensure that the program meets the following objectives:
(1) Is consistent with the goals of the existing programs
established pursuant to Section 381.
(2) Advances the public interest in maximizing cost-effective
electricity savings and related benefits.
(3) Accommodates the need for broader statewide or regional
(b) All audit and reporting requirements established by the
commission pursuant to Section 381 and other statutes shall apply to
the parties chosen as administrators under this section.
(c) If a community choice aggregator is not the administrator of
energy efficiency and conservation programs for which its customers
are eligible, the commission shall require the administrator of
cost-effective energy efficiency and conservation programs to direct
a proportional share of its approved energy efficiency program
activities for which the community choice aggregator's customers are
eligible, to the community choice aggregator's territory without
regard to customer class. To the extent that energy efficiency and
conservation programs are targeted to specific locations to avoid or
defer transmission or distribution system upgrades, the targeted
expenditures shall continue irrespective of whether the loads in
those locations are served by an aggregator or by an electrical
corporation. The commission shall also direct the administrator to
work with the community choice aggregator, to provide advance
information where appropriate about the likely impacts of energy
efficiency programs and to accommodate any unique community program
needs by placing more, or less, emphasis on particular approved
programs to the extent that these special shifts in emphasis in no
way diminish the effectiveness of broader statewide or regional
programs. If the community choice aggregator proposes energy
efficiency programs other than programs already approved for
implementation in its territory, it shall do so under established
commission policies and procedures. The commission may order an
adjustment to the share of energy efficiency program activities
directed to a community choice aggregator's territory if necessary to
ensure an equitable and cost-effective allocation of energy
efficiency program activities.
(d) The commission shall establish an impartial process for making
the determination of whether a third party, including a community
choice aggregator, may become administrators for cost-effective
energy efficiency and conservation programs pursuant to subdivision
(a), and shall not delegate or otherwise transfer the commission's
authority to make this determination for a community choice
aggregator to an electrical corporation.
(e) The impartial process established by the commission shall
allow a registered community choice aggregator to elect to become the
administrator of funds collected from the aggregator's electric
service customers and collected through a nonbypassable charge
authorized by the commission, for cost-effective energy efficiency
and conservation programs, except those funds collected for broader
statewide and regional programs authorized by the commission.
(f) A community choice aggregator electing to become an
administrator shall submit a plan, approved by its governing board,
to the commission for the administration of cost-effective energy
efficiency and conservation programs for the aggregator's electric
service customers that includes funding requirements, a program
description, a cost-effectiveness analysis, and the duration of the
program. The commission shall certify that the plan submitted does
all of the following:
(1) Is consistent with the goals of the programs established
pursuant to this section and Section 399.4.
(2) Advances the public interest in maximizing cost-effective
electricity savings and related benefits.
(3) Accommodates the need for broader statewide or regional
(4) Includes audit and reporting requirements consistent with the
audit and reporting requirements established by the commission
pursuant to this section.
(5) Includes evaluation, measurement, and verification protocols
established by the community choice aggregator.
(6) Includes performance metrics regarding the community choice
aggregator's achievement of the objectives listed in paragraphs (1)
to (5), inclusive, and in any previous plan.
(g) If the commission does not certify the plan for the
administration of cost-effective energy efficiency and conservation
programs submitted by a community choice aggregator pursuant to
subdivision (f), the community choice aggregator electing to
administer these programs may submit an amended plan to the
commission for certification. No moneys may be released to a
community choice aggregator unless the commission certifies the plan
pursuant to subdivision (f).
(a) The commission shall investigate the ability of
electrical corporations and gas corporations to provide various
energy efficiency financing options to their customers for the
purposes of implementing the program developed pursuant to Section
25943 of the Public Resources Code.
(b) Recognizing the already underway 2015 commission work to adopt
efficiency potential and goals, the Energy Commission work on its
2015 energy demand forecast, and the need to determine how to
incorporate meter-based performance into determinations of goals,
portfolio cost-effectiveness, and authorized budgets, the commission,
in a separate or existing proceeding, shall, by September 1, 2016,
authorize electrical corporations or gas corporations to provide
financial incentives, rebates, technical assistance, and support to
their customers to increase the energy efficiency of existing
buildings based on all estimated energy savings and energy usage
reductions, taking into consideration the overall reduction in
normalized metered energy consumption as a measure of energy savings.
Those programs shall include energy usage reductions resulting from
the adoption of a measure or installation of equipment required for
modifications to existing buildings to bring them into conformity
with, or exceed, the requirements of Title 24 of the California Code
of Regulations, as well as operational, behavioral, and
retrocommissioning activities reasonably expected to produce
multiyear savings. Electrical corporations and gas corporations shall
be permitted to recover in rates the reasonable costs of these
programs. The commission shall authorize an electrical corporation
and gas corporation to count all energy savings achieved through the
authorized programs created by this subdivision, unless determined
otherwise, toward overall energy efficiency goals or targets
established by the commission. The commission may adjust the energy
efficiency goals or targets of an electrical corporation and gas
corporation to reflect this change in savings estimation consistent
with this subdivision and subdivision (d).
(c) Effective January 1, 2016, electrical corporations and gas
corporations are authorized to implement the provisions of
subdivision (b) for high opportunity projects or programs. The
commission shall provide expedited authorization of high opportunity
projects and programs to apply the savings baseline provisions in
(d) In furtherance of subdivision (b), the commission, in
consultation with the Energy Commission, shall consider all of the
(1) The results of any interagency baseline assessment.
(2) Any available results from investor-owned utility baseline
pilot studies ordered in D.14-10-046.
(3) Information necessary to ensure consistency with the energy
forecast and planning functions of the Energy Commission and the
Independent System Operator.
(e) The commission may direct electrical corporations and gas
corporations to make filings that are necessary to ensure
coordination with the energy forecast and planning functions of the
Energy Commission and the Independent System Operator.
(f) The commission shall prioritize energy efficiency activities
consistent with Sections 454.55 and 454.56.
It is the intent of the Legislature to protect and
strengthen the current network of community service providers by
doing the following:
(a) Directing that any evaluation of the effectiveness of the
low-income energy efficiency programs shall be based not solely on
cost criteria, but also on the degree to which the provision of
services allows maximum program accessibility to quality programs to
low-income communities by entities that have demonstrated performance
in effectively delivering services to the communities.
(b) Ensuring that high quality, low-income energy efficiency
programs are delivered to the maximum number of eligible participants
at a reasonable cost.
(a) Programs provided to low-income electricity customers,
including, but not limited to, targeted energy-efficiency services
and the California Alternate Rates for Energy program shall be funded
at not less than 1996 authorized levels based on an assessment of
(b) In order to meet legitimate needs of electric and gas
customers who are unable to pay their electric and gas bills and who
satisfy eligibility criteria for assistance, recognizing that
electricity is a basic necessity, and that all residents of the state
should be able to afford essential electricity and gas supplies, the
commission shall ensure that low-income ratepayers are not
jeopardized or overburdened by monthly energy expenditures. Energy
expenditure may be reduced through the establishment of different
rates for low-income ratepayers, different levels of rate assistance,
and energy efficiency programs.
(c) Nothing in this section shall be construed to prohibit
electric and gas providers from offering any special rate or program
for low-income ratepayers that is not specifically required in this
(d) Beginning in 2002, an assessment of the needs of low-income
electricity and gas ratepayers shall be conducted periodically by the
commission with the assistance of the Low-Income Oversight Board. A
periodic assessment shall be made not less often than every third
year. The assessment shall evaluate low-income program implementation
and the effectiveness of weatherization services and energy
efficiency measures in low-income households. The assessment shall
consider whether existing programs adequately address low-income
electricity and gas customers' energy expenditures, hardship,
language needs, and economic burdens.
(e) The commission shall, by not later than December 31, 2020,
ensure that all eligible low-income electricity and gas customers are
given the opportunity to participate in low-income energy efficiency
programs, including customers occupying apartments or similar
multiunit residential structures. The commission and electrical
corporations and gas corporations shall make all reasonable efforts
to coordinate ratepayer-funded programs with other energy
conservation and efficiency programs and to obtain additional federal
funding to support actions undertaken pursuant to this subdivision.
These programs shall be designed to provide long-term reductions
in energy consumption at the dwelling unit based on an audit or
assessment of the dwelling unit, and may include improved insulation,
energy efficient appliances, measures that utilize solar energy, and
other improvements to the physical structure.
(f) The commission shall allocate funds necessary to meet the
low-income objectives in this section.
(a) There is hereby established a Low-Income Oversight Board
that shall advise the commission on low-income electric, gas, and
water customer issues and shall serve as a liaison for the commission
to low-income ratepayers and representatives. The Low-Income
Oversight Board shall replace the Low-Income Advisory Board in
existence on January 1, 2000. The Low-Income Oversight Board shall do
all of the following to advise the commission regarding the
(1) Monitor and evaluate implementation of all programs provided
to low-income electricity, gas, and water customers.
(2) Assist in the development and analysis of any assessments of
low-income customer need.
(3) Encourage collaboration between state and utility programs for
low-income electricity and gas customers to maximize the leverage of
state and federal energy efficiency funds to both lower the bills
and increase the comfort of low-income customers.
(4) Provide reports to the Legislature, as requested, summarizing
the assessment of need, audits, and analysis of program
(5) Assist in streamlining the application and enrollment process
of programs for low-income electricity and gas customers with general
low-income programs, including, but not limited to, the Universal
Lifeline Telephone Service (ULTS) program and, including compliance
with Section 739.1.
(6) Encourage the usage of the network of community service
providers in accordance with Section 381.5.
(b) The Low-Income Oversight Board shall be comprised of 11
members to be selected as follows:
(1) Five members selected by the commission who have expertise in
the low-income community and who are not affiliated with any state
agency or utility group. These members shall be selected in a manner
to ensure an equitable geographic distribution.
(2) One member selected by the Governor.
(3) One member selected by the commission who is a commissioner or
(4) One member selected by the Department of Community Services
(5) One member selected by the commission who is a representative
of private weatherization contractors.
(6) One member selected by the commission who is a representative
of an electrical or gas corporation.
(7) One member selected by the commission who is a representative
of a water corporation.
(c) The Low-Income Oversight Board shall alternate meeting
locations between northern, central, and southern California.
(d) The Low-Income Oversight Board may establish a technical
advisory committee consisting of low-income service providers,
utility representatives, consumer organizations, and commission
staff, to assist the board and may request utility representatives
and commission staff to assist the technical advisory committee.
(e) The commission shall do all of the following in conjunction
with the board:
(1) Work with the board, interested parties, and community-based
organizations to increase participation in programs for low-income
(2) Provide technical support to the board.
(3) Ensure that the energy burden of low-income electricity and
gas customers is reduced.
(4) Provide formal notice of board meetings in the commission's
(f) (1) Members of the board and members of the technical advisory
committee shall be eligible for compensation in accordance with
state guidelines for necessary travel.
(2) Members of the board and members of the technical advisory
committee who are not salaried state service employees shall be
eligible for reasonable compensation for attendance at board
(3) All reasonable costs incurred by the board in carrying out its
duties pursuant to subdivision (a), including staffing, travel, and
administrative costs, shall be reimbursed through the public
utilities reimbursement account and shall be part of the budget of
the commission and the commission shall consult with the board in the
preparation of that portion of the commission's annual proposed
(a) Funds transferred to the State Energy Resources
Conservation and Development Commission pursuant to this article for
purposes of public interest research, development, and demonstration
shall be transferred to the Public Interest Research, Development,
and Demonstration Fund, which is hereby created in the State
Treasury. The fund is a trust fund and shall contain money from all
interest, repayments, disencumbrances, royalties, and any other
proceeds appropriated, transferred, or otherwise received for
purposes pertaining to public interest research, development, and
demonstration. Any appropriations that are made from the fund shall
have an encumbrance period of not longer than two years, and a
liquidation period of not longer than four years.
(b) Funds deposited in the Public Interest Research, Development,
and Demonstration Fund may be expended for projects that serve the
energy needs of both stationary and transportation purposes if the
research provides an electricity ratepayer benefit.
(c) The State Energy Resources Conservation and Development
Commission shall report annually to the appropriate budget committees
of the Legislature on any encumbrances or liquidations that are
outstanding at the time the commission's budget is submitted to the
Legislature for review.
(a) On or before March 1, 2014, the commission shall order
electrical corporations to submit, on or before July 1, 2015, a
tariff to be used, at the discretion of local governments, to fund
energy efficiency improvements in street light poles owned by the
electrical corporations to ensure reduced energy consumption for
local governments who are streetlight customers covered by these
(b) The tariff shall be designed to allow local governments to
remit the cost of the improvement through the tariff over time,
resulting in reduced energy consumption, without shifting costs to
nonparticipating ratepayers. The cost of the improvement shall be
identified separately rather than included within the charge for
(c) Notwithstanding subdivision (b), the improvement performed
pursuant to the tariff submitted under subdivision (a) shall be
eligible for any rebate or incentives available through
ratepayer-funded programs intended to increase energy efficiency.
(d) The electrical corporation that owns the street light poles
shall install or otherwise make the energy efficiency improvements
selected by the local government with an appropriately trained
workforce in accordance with all applicable safety orders of the
(e) For the purposes of this section, the following terms have the
(1) "Electrical corporation" means an electrical corporation, as
defined in Section 218, with at least 100,000 service connections in
(2) "Street light pole" means a pole, arm, or fixture used
primarily for street, pedestrian, or security lighting.