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(a) The California Pubic Utilities Code under Chapter 2.3 of Division 1, Part 1 allows electric utility customers to aggregate their electric loads as members of their local community with community choice aggregators, where a community choice aggregator may be any city, county or group of cities or counties who have elected to combine the loads of their programs through the formation of a joint powers agency established under Chapter 5 (commencing with Section 6500) of Division 7 of Title 1 of the California Government Code. (Ord. 2551, § 1, 5/31/2016)

(b) The County of Humboldt has been investigating options to provide electric services to constituents within its service areas with the intent of achieving greater local involvement over the provisions of electric services, competitive electric rates, the development of clean, local renewable energy projects, reduced greenhouse gas emissions, and the wider implementation of energy conservation and efficiency projects and programs through a Community Choice Aggregation (CCA) program. (Ord. 2551, § 1, 5/31/2016)

(c) The County of Humboldt is a member of the Redwood Coast Energy Authority (RCEA), a joint powers authority formed by the County of Humboldt, Cities of Arcata, Blue Lake, Eureka, Ferndale, Fortuna and Rio Dell, Trinidad and the Humboldt Bay Municipal Water District, to act as a regional agency to promote sustainable energy initiatives that reduce energy demand, increase energy efficiency, and advance the use of clean, efficient and renewable resources available in the region. (Ord. 2551, § 1, 5/31/2016)

(d) The RCEA is authorized by ordinance to act as a community choice aggregator to implement and operate a CCA program under California Law. (Ord. 2551, § 1, 5/31/2016)

(e) RCEA has established key CCA program goals of maximizing the use of local renewable resources while also providing competitive rates to customers. These goals are aimed at supporting local economic development as well as reducing the environmental impacts resulting from the use of electricity in a technically and economically feasible manner. (Ord. 2551, § 1, 5/31/2016)

(f) To analyze the feasibility of operating a CCA program that achieves these goals, RCEA has retained independent technical support services to conduct the appropriate development and operational studies, including technical, financial and risk analyses. These studies will assist RCEA, its member agencies, and the community in evaluating a potential rate structure and energy portfolio, and, ultimately, potential CCA program viability prior to formal launch of a CCA program through the filing of an Implementation Plan with the CPUC. (Ord. 2551, § 1, 5/31/2016)

(g) Participation in a CCA program implemented and operated by the RCEA, rather than independently electing to become a community choice aggregator, will reduce the County’s financial exposure from community choice aggregation, if any, because RCEA’s joint power authority structure immunizes its member agencies from its debts, liabilities and obligations of a CCA program. (Ord. 2551, § 1, 5/31/2016)

(h) Electric customers have the right to opt out of the CCA program and continue to receive service from the existing utility under Public Utilities Code § 366.2 (Ord. 2551, § 1, 5/31/2016)

(i) Under the RCEA CCA program structure, the County will have CCA program voting privileges on the RCEA Board of Directors as set out in the RCEA Amended and Restated Joint Powers Agreement effective December 15, 2015. (Ord. 2551, § 1, 5/31/2016)