OC Power Authority to Make Major Production Decisions and Set Agenda Rules at Special Board Meeting
Orange County Power Authority (OCPA) Special Meeting Just Announced for Tomorrow, November 23, 2021
On tomorrow’s special meeting agenda, the OCPA Board will discuss power supply options (Item 2) and will look to adopting a proposed agenda-setting policy that requires two board members to jointly submit agenda items at least 10 days in advance, or initiated by the Chair of the Board, who is Irvine Councilmember Mike Carroll (Item 4). This policy resembles the “Rule of 2” the Irvine City Council passed in January of this year.
Power Supply Options (Item 2)
OCPA staff has been clear that they plan to provide the minimum renewables required by law (38.5% in 2022). They will also provide an optional 100% renewable product that they say will cost the average household $4-5 more per month.
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report says that immediate and massive emissions reductions are necessary to avoid catastrophic climate outcomes. Climate activists are urging OCPA to offer a third product that’s cleaner than the minimum so cities that can’t afford 100% renewable as their default product have another option that is cleaner than the minimum.
Each city will have to agendize and vote in order to make its default product cleaner than the minimum renewables required by law (currently 33%). SoCal Edison currently offers 33.1% clean electricity in its standard electricity product.
Councilmember Larry Agran recently issued a memo asking to place a resolution on the November 23, 2021 City Council agenda calling for 100% Renewable Electricity, but it did not receive a second from another Councilmember, as required under Irvine council rules.
The youth-led Sunrise Movement climate group is planning a rally at Irvine City Hall in support of 100% renewable electricity on Tuesday, November 23 at 2:30 PM. Information regarding the rally can be found here.
Agenda-Setting Policy (Item 4)
The proposed agenda-setting policy, Administrative Policy No. 012, states:
“any Board Member initiated items for consideration on an Agenda must be submitted to the Chief Executive Officer at least ten business days prior to the next regularly scheduled Board Meeting and be either jointly initiated by two Board Members or initiated by the Chair of the Board.”
Critics say the policy undermines representative government. Irvine residents have criticized the new agenda-setting policy stating it has prevented important items of great public interest and concern to be given a public hearing.
Creation of Ad Hoc Committees (Item 3)
Another proposed policy requires the creation of board member committees related to marketing and outreach for OCPA’s launch and another for budget and finance for OCPA’s launch. It’s unclear whether the public will be included in these committees or have any visibility to the committee’s work.
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