In May, progress continued toward the launch of Alameda County’s new Community Choice energy program, East Bay Community Energy (EBCE), which will begin providing electricity to residents and businesses in the spring of 2018. Most relevant for community-minded advocates, the EBCE governing board is vetting candidates for a Community Advisory Committee, selecting a CEO, and working on a local development business plan.
Community Advisory Committee. The purpose of the 9-member Community Advisory Committee is to weigh in on program design, operations, and all other decisions pertaining to the EBCE program (excluding legal and staff issues). The chair of the committee will sit on the EBCE Board as a non-voting member. Over three dozen people applied to serve on the committee.
The deadline for selection of the committee was originally set for April, then expected at the May EBCE Board meeting. However, selection was delayed again due to difficulty in convening the committee of the five Board members responsible for vetting applicants.
In response, the East Bay Clean Power Alliance sent a letter to the board and organized a number of community members to speak at the May EBCE board meeting, calling attention to the fact that decisions are currently being made without a full board, about issues that the Community Advisory Committee should be weighing in on, such as:
- Vetting of applicants and selection of the CEO
- Marketing Materials and outreach plans
- Contracts for services essential to program launch
- Data management RFP issues
- Decisions regarding legislative positions
The EBCE board has since stated that they will select the committee at the next board meeting on June 7th.
Selecting a CEO. The EBCE governing board began accepting applications for the CEO of EBCE in March. They are in the process of reviewing applications and narrowing the pool of applicants. In response to East Bay Clean Power Alliance speakers calling for the need to include community voice in the process, the board has invited a member of the community to participate in the final phase of the selection process, while it finalizes selection of the Community Advisory Committee.
Progress on local development business plan. The foundational agreement of EBCE calls for a local development business plan as a high level roadmap of how EBCE could achieve many community benefits by building out local renewable energy resources. A team selected to create the business plan will hold a series of focus groups in June to inform planning for different aspects of the program. Members of the East Bay Clean Power Alliance and other community advocates will participate.
For more information and to join the East Bay Clean Power Alliance, contact Jessica Tovar, Coordinator, East Bay Clean Power Alliance, at email@example.com