(1) Existing law imposes various limitations on emissions of air contaminants for the control of air pollution from vehicular and nonvehicular sources. Existing law generally designates air pollution control and air quality management districts
(air district) with the primary responsibility for the control of air pollution from all sources other than vehicular sources. Existing law requires the State Air Resources Board (state board)
to identify toxic air contaminants that are emitted into the ambient air of the state and to establish airborne toxic control measures to reduce emissions of toxic air contaminants from nonvehicular sources. This bill would prohibit an air district from adopting or maintaining a rule that would limit or prohibit
the usage of a federally compliant natural gas powered generator during a deenergization event and would require that any usage during a deenergization event not count toward any time limitation on actual usage and routine testing and maintenance included as a condition for issuance of any permit for that generator. The bill would prohibit the state board from adopting or maintaining a rule that would limit or prohibit the usage of a federally compliant natural gas powered generator during a deenergization event. By prohibiting an air district maintaining existing rules, the bill would impose a state-mandated local program to revise any rule not in compliance with that prohibition.
Existing law establishes one or more hearing boards with a specified membership in each air district for the purposes of performing specified functions, including, among others, issuing
specified emergency variances without notice or a hearing.
This bill would require a facility permittee applying for an emergency variance with an air district hearing board to demonstrate that the permitted emergency backup generator is using the cleanest, feasible, available backup power source sufficient to meet the facility’s electrical service demand during a deenergization event, as specified. By expanding the information required for an air district hearing board to review when issuing this type of emergency variance, the bill would impose a state-mandated local program.
existing law, the Public Utilities Commission has regulatory authority over public utilities, including electrical corporations, while local publicly owned electric utilities are under the direction of their governing boards. Electrical cooperatives are subject to the regulatory authority of the commission, except as specified. Existing law requires each electrical corporation to annually prepare and submit a wildfire mitigation plan to the commission for review and approval, as specified. Following approval, the commission is required to oversee compliance with the plans. Existing law requires each local publicly owned electric utility and electrical cooperative to annually prepare a wildfire mitigation plan and to verify that the wildfire mitigation plan complies with all applicable rules, regulations, and standards, as appropriate. Existing law requires a wildfire mitigation plan of an electrical corporation to include, among other things, protocols for deenergizing portions of the electrical distribution
system that consider the associated impacts on public safety, as well as protocols related to mitigating the public safety impacts of those protocols, including impacts on critical first responders and on health and communications infrastructure. Existing law requires a wildfire mitigation plan of an electrical corporation to also include appropriate and feasible procedures for notifying a customer who may be impacted by the deenergizing of electrical lines and requires these procedures to consider the need to notify, as a priority, critical first responders, health care facilities, and operators of telecommunications infrastructure with premises within the footprint of a potential deenergization event. Existing law requires that an electrical cooperative and a local publicly owned electric utility consider these matters when developing and implementing a wildfire mitigation plan.
If an electrical corporation, electrical cooperative, or local publicly owned electric
utility has undertaken a deenergization event during a calendar year, this bill would require the electrical corporation, electrical cooperative, or local publicly owned electric utility, by January 30 of the following calendar year, to submit a report with specified information to each air district affected by the deenergization event and to the state board.
Under existing law, a violation of any order, decision, rule, direction, demand, or requirement of the commission is a crime.
Because this bill would require action by the commission to implement its requirements, and a violation of that action by an electrical corporation or electrical cooperative would be a crime, the bill would impose a state-mandated local program by creating a new crime. By requiring local publicly owned electric utilities to report matters to air
quality management districts and air pollution control
districts the bill would impose a state-mandated local program.
(3) Existing constitutional provisions require that a statute that limits the right of access to the meetings of public bodies or the writings of public officials and agencies be adopted with findings demonstrating the interest protected by the limitation and the need for protecting that interest.
This bill would make legislative findings to that effect.
(4) The California Constitution requires the state to reimburse local agencies and school districts for certain costs mandated by the state. Statutory provisions establish procedures for making that reimbursement.
This bill would provide that with regard to certain mandates no reimbursement is required by this act for specified reasons.
With regard to any other mandates, this bill would provide that, if the Commission on State Mandates determines that the bill contains costs so mandated by the state, reimbursement for those costs shall be made pursuant to the statutory provisions noted above.