Michael Shaw

SB 520 proposes to pay certain ratepayer advocates through utility bill funds

By Michael Shaw, VP, Government Relations

Capitol Update, Aug. 11, 2017 Share this on FacebookTweet thisEmail this to a friend

Current law requires the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) to direct electric utilities to pay what is known as ‘intervenor compensation’ to eligible parties involved in proceedings at the Commission. The funds for intervenor compensation come out of utility bills paid by residential and nonresidential ratepayers. However, while advocates claiming to represent residential ratepayers are allowed to apply for intervenor compensation, advocates for industrial ratepayers and other nonresidential groups are not.

Now SB 520 proposes to add the ability for those same groups to files claims for intervenor compensation when they engage in proceedings of the California Independent System Operator (CAISO). This added cost would be borne by ratepayers as well adding to utility bills.

CMTA opposes SB 520 due to the added cost to ratepayers and the exclusion of industry groups from eligibility. Subsidizing the activity of certain advocacy groups while excluding others that pay into the system is blatantly unfair and unbalanced.

For more information on this bill, please contact Michael Shaw, Vice President of Government Relations at mshaw@cmta.net by phone at (916) 498-3328.

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