CCEs show Government in Action

CCEs show Government in Action

By Bruce Naegel December 2017

CCE (Community Choice Energy) (1) programs are non-profit semi government organizations supplying electricity to households and businesses. They have regular meetings, that are open to the public. Here is a view of a board meeting for SVCE (2), the CCE supplying electricity to residents in Santa Clara County.

Looking at the SVCE Board in action on November 29

SVCE (Silicon Valley Clean Energy) Board Meetings

SVCE board meetings occur on average every two weeks and provide good communications to customers. Before the meeting, SVCE supplies agenda packets and presentation. When possible, meetings are streamed live. If one misses a meeting, one can view recordings (video or audio). Meeting minutes are also available after the meeting.  So, there are many ways to attend meetings. (2)
Even if you cannot go, you are covered.

Items covered in the SVCE Board Meeting, December 7, 2017

  • A proposal from DMV GL to provide GHG measurement for the SVCE service area. (Passed)
  • Adopting a resolution to have Milpitas join SVCE (Passed)
  • Authorize the CEO to retire loans from member cities (Passed)
  • Results of Joint Request for Offers with Monterey Bay Community Power for power
  • Approve Customer Program Advisory Council Charter (Approved)
  • Resolution to approve Rate Schedules effective January 1, 2018.

DNV GL (3) and proposal for GHG measurements:

The cities in SVCE’s service area need GHG measurements to keep their sustainability plans on track. It has not been easy in the past to get funds for these measurements. SVCE contracted with DNV GL to provide this service for all the cities in the SVCE service area. This means one set of consistent measurements. DNV GL is a well-respected engineering services company with extensive experience in sustainability matters. The price charged was viewed as being very good.

 Milpitas joining SVCE:

Up through last month, Milpitas was the only city in Santa Clara County that was not part of a CCE or a municipal utility. SVCE invited Milpitas to join it and Milpitas accepted.  This is great news since each new member helps strengthen the CCE movement.

Authorize loan repayments to member cities.

Cupertino, Mountain View, and Sunnyvale each loaned SVCE funds to get SVCE started.  The intention was to have these funds repaid to the cities by the end of 2017. This resolution delivers on that commitment and strengthens SVCE’s financial profile.  As seen in the graphic below, SVCE is in good financial health.


Financial Ratios
Financial Ratios show good financial Health

Joint Request for Offers with Monterey Bay Community Power (CCE for Monterey County.

CCE organizations need to solicit offers for power. This request provided very interesting competitive offers including one with 150 MW of solar and 45 MW of Storage. There has been concern as more CCEs come on line, there will not be enough renewable power to fulfill needs. This does not seem to be an issue at this point.

Approve Customer Program Advisory Council Charter (Approved)

One of the key benefits of a CCE to its customers is that money is available for programs. The GHG measurement listed earlier is one example. This is a resolution to create an advisory council for ensuring the programs reflect the needs of SVCE’s customers.


Comparing CCEs
CCE Advisory Comparison

Approve a new electricity rate for 2018.

SVCE’s pricing position is to be 1% below the PG&E price for energy. This resolution called for setting that for January 1, 2018. The current recommendation is to wait until after January 1, 2018 since that is when PG&E sets its’ price. This will be looked at again in December.

Government Operations with good things happening;

This was a meeting with good news advancing the case for a more sustainability future.  Among the pieced of good news was retiring debt on schedule. The cities now have a way to get consistent GHG measurements, key to their climate plan.

There are meetings that may be more challenging. The good news for those occasions is the hearings are open. People who are part of the community can comment on them and possibly influence the outcome.