Sonoma County to study community renewable-energy program

SANTA ROSA -- The Sonoma County Board of Supervisors, acting as the Sonoma County Water Agency board of directors, today approved  funding for the development of a feasibility study to develop a local community choice aggregation, or CCA, program.

Up to $150,000 was approved for the feasibility study, and up to $100,000 for Rusty Klassen of Marshall-based Local Power to develop the water agency's renewable energy programs. The action came at the same time the board approved  and authorized the water agency to implement its new Energy Policy.

“The financial impact and economics involved in implementing such a program could be significant. The ability to invest power revenues locally while creating green jobs for County residents is attractive and this study will be looking at these opportunities,” said water agency board chairman and Supervisor Efren Carrillo.

In 2002, the California Legislature enacted legislation permitting the creation of CCA programs.  Under the legislation, a city, county or joint powers agency (two or more cities and counties) may implement a CCA program.

Once formed, residents within the CCA service area can opt out of the CCA and continue to receive power from the utility (e.g., PG&E).  Those that do not opt out will have their power supplied by the CCA entity. The utility continues to provide and bill CCA customers for power transmission and other services (e.g., meter reading, billing, etc.).  Only the electricity generation portion of electricity service is provided by the CCA entity.

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