By Karen Villasenor.

California Choice Energy Authority staff member Patti Garibay presented to local government professionals on Community Choice Aggregation (CCA) on Wednesday, October 25 at the 2017 Municipal Management Association of Southern California Annual Conference in San Diego.

“As CCA programs become increasingly popular throughout California, it is important for local government leaders and staff members to thoroughly understand the benefits and risks of CCA,” says Garibay. “It was an honor to share my CCA knowledge with MMASC Annual Conference attendees, and I’m eager to share further insights with any cities who are considering a CCA program.”      

Garibay presented during a breakout session titled “The Basics of Community Choice Aggregation.” During the session, she provided an overview of CCA including the history, risks, benefits and implementation process. Garibay also discussed residential rates and renewable energy use among operating CCAs, and compared three CCA governance structures: Joint Powers Authority (JPA), enterprise and hybrid JPA.      

The JPA, enterprise and hybrid JPA governance structures each offer different levels of control, risk and cost. In a traditional JPA, each CCA receives one vote for rate setting, revenue control, RPS decisions and program control, while enterprise and hybrid JPAs allow the CCA to have full control. In terms of operating risk and administrative costs, CCAs in a traditional JPA have no risk or cost, enterprise CCAs have full risk and cost, and CCAs in a hybrid JPA share risk and costs among other CCAs.

CCEA is currently the only option for cities that want to implement a CCA program in their community through the hybrid JPA governance structure. CCEA, a hybrid JPA whose members include the cities of Lancaster, San Jacinto, Pico Rivera and Rancho Mirage, provides feasibility, implementation and management support services for cities interested in forming a CCA program.

“CCEA was formed to assist cities in the CCA implementation process,” added Garibay. “Cities have the opportunity to share in the operational costs of running their CCA; less overhead and costs allows the CCA to reinvest in their community through new energy programs and programs tailored to meet individual city needs.”

CCEA is a pioneering Community Choice Aggregation solution for cities in California. Formed in 2014, the joint powers authority provides an innovative model that retains local control of utility services for cities who partner with CCEA while alleviating operational risk and administrative overhead associated with the implementation of CCA. CCEA’s joint power authority model is quickly becoming the gold standard for implementation of CCA by California cities.