Council Approves Community Choice Aggregation

On November 21, 2016, the City Council approved the implementation of a Community Choice Aggregation Program in Piedmont after approving the the Joint Powers Agreement for the East Bay Community Energy Authority on November 7, 2016.

Community Choice Aggregation (CCA) is a program that enables local governments to aggregate electricity demand within their jurisdictions in order to procure electricity for its customers while maintaining the existing electricity provider (e.g., Pacific Gas & Electric Company or PG&E) for customer billing, transmission and distribution services. By the end of 2014, CCAs were serving nearly five percent of Americans in over 1,300 municipalities in seven states, including California. CCAs offer local governments the opportunity to aggregate regional energy demand, set local energy goals, develop energy efficiency and demand reduction programs, and negotiate directly with energy suppliers and developers rather than the traditional utility business model that relies more heavily on fossil fuels.

The State of California passed legislation in 2002 (Assembly Bill 117) that permits local agencies to form CCA programs. The Alameda County Board of Supervisors passed a resolution in June 2014 authorizing the Community Development Agency to investigate the implementation of a CCA program for Alameda County and its cities and authorized the formation of a Steering Committee to advise the Board in this effort.

The Steering Committee has held monthly public meetings since June 2015 to direct and review consultant work on a Technical Study, Joint Powers Agreement, and other elements of the proposed CCA program in Alameda County, known as East Bay Community Energy (EBCE). On October 4, 2016, the Alameda County Board of Supervisors formally took action to create the East Bay Community Energy Authority and requested that each of the cities that are considering joining the JPA to schedule the item for consideration by their respective City Councils by the end of November 2016. This schedule allows time for the necessary steps for the Authority to begin delivering power to customers in the fall of 2017.

Piedmont’s City Council has been actively interested in considering membership in a CCA since its 2010 adoption of the City’s Climate Action Plan, in which Measure BE-6.2 directs the City to research the feasibility of joining a Community Choice Aggregation. On May 5, 2014, during its discussion of the City’s Climate Action Program, the City Council directed staff to explore the feasibility of a CCA in Piedmont. On April 6, 2015, the Council appointed Council Member Tim Rood to represent Piedmont as a member of the Steering Committee providing guidance to the Alameda County Board of Supervisors regarding the formation of a CCA for Alameda County. On April 18 and October 17, 2016, the City Council received an update from County staff and consultants on the progress of the CCA formation, a technical/feasibility study and a joint powers agreement.

The reports to Council and videos of the Council meetings are available on the City’s website, http://www.ci.piedmont.ca.us/citycouncil/

For more information about CCA in California and how it works, visit the “Frequently Asked Questions” at www.acgov.org/cda/planning/cca/faqs.htm.

You can also find more information on the website of East Bay Community Energy, http://www.ebce.org/