Community Advisory Commission Members Appointed

The City Council approved the new members of the new SJ Clean Energy Advisory Commission in January 2018.  Everyone on the Commission lives in San Jose. Here are some of their backgrounds.  All meetings will be open to the public.

The terms are for four years, but initially some of the terms are shorter for continuity and were randomly assigned.  The first meeting will take place in mid-February.

Congratulations, and Thank You, to all the CAC members!

1. CAAC- Seat 1: Appoint Richard Zahner to a term expiring 12/31/19; – Retired energy industry consultant; previously Executive Director of the Power Association of Northern California during the transition to a competitive power market that resulted in the formation of the California ISO; experience negotiating power contracts.
2. CAAC- Seat 2: Appoint Katy Nomura to a term expiring 12/31/19; Utility Manager City of Cupertino
3. CAAC- Seat 3: Appoint Reza Sadeghian to a term expiring 12/31/19; Background in environment and Smart Cities
4. CAAC Seat 4: Appoint Stephanie Gutowski to a term expiring12/31/21; Silicon Valley Clean Energy Marketing staff assistant
5. CAAC-Seat 5: Appoint Anthony Strawa to a term expiring 12/31/21; Atmospheric Scientist & Chief of Technology Transfer Office at NASA and Stanford PhD
6. CAAC- Seat 6: Appoint Matt Mahan to a term expiring 12/31/21; Brigade Group, Inc. CEO & co-founder; has years of experience in running campaigns, building technology and scaling up companies that reach people online, at mass scale and cost effectively. Board Member, Silicon Valley Leadership Group and Board Member and Joint Venture Silicon Valley
7. At-Large Seat 1: Appoint Daniel Zazueta to a term expiring 12/31/19; Deputy City Attorney at City of Santa Clara; previously at US Dept of Energy, Washington DC
8. At-Large Seat 2: Appoint Ruth Merino to a term expiring 12/31/21; Retired City of San Jose Senior Program Performance Auditor & Chair of – Advocates
9. At-Large Seat 3: Appoint Benjamin Foster to a term expiring 12/31/21; Fosterra, LLC-President; has worked on national and global clean energy projects; prepared San Jose Economic Report on CCAs commissioned by the Center for Climate Protection and recently served on the Joint Venture: Silicon Valley Board and Executive Committee.

New Director Appointed!
The City appointed a Director of Community Energy Oct 17th, 2017.  Her name is Lori Mitchell – please see this link for the City’s press release on the appointment.

Selected press coverage soon after the SJ *Yes* vote on May 16th

San Jose Inside  5/19/2017
San Jose Approves Clean Energy Program Set to Launch in 2018
Utility Dive 5/18/2017
San Jose Is Latest, Largest City in California to Embrace Community Choice
SF Chronicle 5/16/2017
San Jose Approves Clean Energy Program
SJ Mercury New 5/16/2017
San Jose City Council approves new community choice energy plan, the largest in California

Mercury News Editorial  5/14/2017
Community Choice Energy Plan will be good for San Jose and consumers
San Jose can’t hope to meet the state’s mandate of getting 50 percent of its energy from renewable resources by 2030 without aggressively pursuing the use of clean power. So on Tuesday, the City Council should approve a Community Choice Energy (CCE) plan, giving residents and businesses the ability to choose their source of electricity. This is the most economical way for San Jose to pursue its green energy goals at little risk to the city budget and taxpayers.

“We’re just not going to see leadership in fighting climate change from Washington, D.C.,” says San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo. “It’s incumbent on cities to offer that leadership.”

Op-Ed by Mayor Sam Liccardo in support of CCE  4/28/2017
Let consumers choose to use clean energy and, by the way, save money
The San Jose City Council …can make San Jose greener by enabling our residents and businesses to choose the source of their electricity, through a Community Choice Energy (CCE) program.  By becoming the largest U.S. city to do so, we can save consumers money, boost our renewable energy supply and invest in energy efficiency projects.

Article in the Mercury News Online and Resident/Community papers 2/24/2017
Community Choice Coming To Silicon Valley in April
The objective of the program, started by a nonprofit called Silicon Valley Clean Energy, is to offer cleaner electricity to residents, businesses and municipal facilities at a cheaper rate than PG&E.

Opinion piece in SJ Mercury News  9/6/2016
LeZotte, Norton: San Jose needs Community Choice Energy

San Jose’s neighboring cities are about to get greener electricity at lower rates. San Jose policymakers need to to catch up, move full speed ahead with their due diligence and give businesses and residents here greener electricity and lower rates, too.

City of San Jose will host a CCA public information session at 6:30 pm on Monday, September 12th, 2016. See the details at the Events page
    See the Flyer –  CCA Public Meeting

City of San Jose now has a Community Choice Webpage (July 2016) Check it out here for the latest status

July 2016 Status at City of San Jose Clean Energy page:
Community Outreach
San José will host a CCA information session in September 2016 and also present the draft SJCE technical study results in Fall 2016.

Next Steps

  • July/Aug. 2016 – Award SJCE Technical Study Request for Proposal
  • Sept. 2016 – CCA Information Session (date to be announced no later than Aug. 15)
  • Oct./Nov. 2016 – Complete Draft Technical Study; Public Input
  • Dec. 13, 2016 – Present SJCE recommendations to City Council

What’s New With Community Choice Energy in San Jose?  (April 11, 2016)
For the latest, check out the great post from SJCE’s Chair, Ruth Merino, on Clean Power Exchange (CPX). The Center for Climate Protection has created this new site to communicate the latest info on Community Choice, and San Jose is featured in the first e-mail which announces the site.

City Council Mtg 3/1/2016 – Summary and Links to video/transcript
The San Jose City Council took a significant step forward on Community Choice on March 1st by passing a modified motion for the Environmental Services Division to draft an RFP (Request for Proposal) for an entity to develop, finance, launch, and operate a Community Choice Aggregation program in San Jose.  Council, in memos and discussion, indicated a strong interest in fully understanding the “public option” as well as a 3rd party startup service.

Before releasing an RFP, staff will work closely with the the attorney’s office to come back with a framework for the RFP process, with a goal of ensuring that there will not be a conflict of interest for the consultant who performs the technical study, and that a public option is also independently evaluated.  The RFP framework or draft will be reviewed with Council before proceeding.

Transcript and Video of Council Meeting (CCE Item 7.1 begins about 2 hrs 12 minutes into video)

San Jose Mercury News Editorial in Support of CCE,  3/1,2016:
Mercury News gives strong support for San Jose CCE, and also voices preference for a public-private partnership to minimize or eliminate the start-up costs. The editorial is timed to coincide with tomorrow’s City Council discussion and vote. 

Community Choice Op-Ed  in 2/28 Mercury News
Here is the link to a great oped by Center for Climate Protection Executive Director Ann Hancock and by Jeff Byron published in the Merc’s Feb 28th Sunday’s edition.

Next Milestone
The San Jose City Council will vote on March 1st, to decide whether to authorize Environmental Services Department staff to issue an RFP (Request for Proposal)  for an entity to develop, finance, launch, and operate a Community Choice Aggregation program in San Jose and return to Council in Fall 2016 to present recommendations.

T&E Committee Mtg  2/1/2016 –  Our summary & some comments:
San Jose Transportation & Environment Committee unanimously approved the Environmental Services Department’s recommendation to issue an RFP(Request for Proposal) for a CCE for San Jose.  It is a first step forward for San Jose, and we’re pleased with the progress. Full City Council approval is needed next – this mtg(& vote) will be March 1st. The turn out was good: there were 9 community members that spoke out, representing various groups and stakeholders, and all except one supported CCE.  SJCE had 2 speakers, and our input and letter(below) were well received.   Council member Rocha specifically asked ESD to respond to the questions in SJCE and Ctr Climate Protection letter. Visit here to see video of the mtg. Scroll down to mtg date of 2/1, under Council Mtgs, and click on ‘video’ link. May take a couple seconds to load. Transcript of mtg is also there (but note it contains some errors and omissions). Submitted letters can be found at the ‘agenda’ link.

SJCE Letter to City of San Jose, T&E Committee, 1/30/2016:
SJCE letter to City of SJ, advocating for CCE formation, and supporting of ESD staff recommendation to proceed with (RFP and) formal technical study. (Written and Co-signed with CCP.)

City of San Jose, Environmental Services Departments, Report on CCEs 1/15/2016:
Key ESD department report, prepared for T & E Committee. Recommends to committee to move forward with CCE program, and issue a Request for Proposal(RFP). Report will be subject of Feb 1 Committee mtg 

San Francisco Chronicle, 12/17/2015:
CPUC Approves 100% increased Exit Fee; hidden fees protect PG&E, and hinder CCE efforts.

San Jose Mercury (front page, lead story of print copy), 11/29/2015:
Front page story on CCE movement and activity in Santa Clara County and San Jose.

The Almanac (Editorial, Peninsula News), 11/4/2015:
San Mateo County Board of Supervisors preliminarily approves formation of Joint Powers Authority for a CCE. The right choice, argues County Supervisor Dave Pines.

The Daily Journal (The Peninsula’s ‘HomePage’), 11/3/2015:
San Mateo County Board set to approve next step for CCE formation. Program to be called Peninsula Clean Energy, with expected official formation by Feb 2016.

San Jose City Council, Rules Committee Mtg, 10/28/2015:
SJCE Chair Ruth Merino speaks out at Rules Comm Mtg, pushing SJ to keep CCE discussions on track and on schedule (for Feb 2016 Trans & Env Comm Mtg).
SJCE Merino Letter to Rules Committee

San Jose Mercury, 9/2/2015:
Mayors speak out against CCE attacks; San Diego Gas & Electric attempts to amend SB350.
SB350 – issue of restrictions on CCEs

Sacromento Bee & New York Times, 4/29/2015:
Gov Brown Issues Greenhouse Gar Reduction Goals(SacBee)
Gov Brown Issues Emission Cut Targets(NYT)s

San Jose Mercury New, 3/27/2015:

The Independent(in Alameda County), 3/19/2015:
Alameda County Launches Study

San Mateo Daily Journal, 2/25/2015:

San Jose Mercury New, 2/25/2015:

SF Mayor Press Release, 1/26/2015:

Grist Article,  2/25/2015:
California communities seize control of their energy futures

San Francisco’s CCA effort now supported by Mayor Lee: January 2015

New York Times, 3/7/2014: CCA’s in Illinois and nationally.