The City of Rancho Mirage is the latest city to join the California Choice Energy Authority (CCEA) as an associate member. As a CCEA associate member, the City will be thoroughly guided through the Community Choice Aggregation (CCA) implementation process. The Rancho Mirage Energy Authority (RMEA) program is scheduled to launch in May 2018.
The City’s CCA feasibility study, completed by CCEA, confirmed a positive outlook for a CCA program in the City of Rancho Mirage. CCEA is ready to provide resources that will ensure that the RMEA program is established properly and efficiently.
CCEA’s engagement with the City of Rancho Mirage began in early 2017, when the City engaged CCEA to complete a feasibility study. Completed in August 2017, the study confirmed the City’s ability to establish and operate a CCA program that can offer rate savings to residents and businesses, ensure local control of rate setting and energy procurement and add a revenue stream to support the City’s economic development and energy efficiency efforts. The feasibility study also confirmed that the City’s CCA program is expected to provide sufficient revenues to cover CCA costs and establish reserves.
“Electricity bills can be a significant burden for City of Rancho Mirage residents and businesses due to the climate in our region,” said Isaiah Hagerman, City of Rancho Mirage Director of Administrative Services. “The primary goal of Rancho Mirage Energy Authority is to save residents money, not to create a municipal utility burdened with high administrative costs. The Rancho Mirage Energy Authority has the potential to be another area where the City Council can positively impact our residents and business community.”
Per AB 117, CCA programs enable local governments to procure energy and generate electricity for residents, businesses and municipal facilities within a community. CCAs currently operating in California have typically been formed as a single-entity CCA or through a Joint Powers Authority (JPA).
“From the beginning, the City of Rancho Mirage wanted to establish a CCA program that would allow the City to maintain local control and practice economies of scale,” added Hagerman. “Most CCAs are formed through traditional JPA or by a city on its own, so it was exciting to learn that CCEA offered an option that reduced risk, provided economies of scale for power procurement and maintained local control. The CCEA option is the perfect fit for our community.”
CCEA is a pioneering Community Choice Aggregation solution for cities in California. The hybrid 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, most recently the City of Pico Rivera’s CCA, Pico Rivera Innovative Municipal Energy.