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AB-157 Electricity: rates.(2019-2020)

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Date Published: 01/07/2019 09:00 PM
AB157:v99#DOCUMENT


CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2019–2020 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill
No. 157


Introduced by Assembly Member Voepel

January 07, 2019


An act to add Section 739.13 to the Public Utilities Code, relating to rates.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 157, as introduced, Voepel. Electricity: rates.
Under existing law, the Public Utilities Commission has regulatory authority over public utilities, including electrical corporations. Existing law authorizes the commission to fix the rates and charges for every public utility and requires that those rates and charges be just and reasonable. Existing law, prior to 2014, limited the rates charged to residential customers for electricity usage up to the baseline quantity, as specified, and authorized the commission to limit the increase in residential rates for electricity usage up to 130% of baseline to not more than 5% per year. Under its existing authority, the commission has authorized San Diego Gas and Electric to assess on customers with usage in excess of 130% of the baseline quantity a charge that reflects the cost shift resulting from the capped residential rates for usage up to 130% of baseline quantity.
This bill would require the commission to require San Diego Gas and Electric, upon application by a customer who is 65 years of age or older and resides in a residence that is 2,000 square feet or less, to exempt the customer from above-described charge for usage in excess of 130% of the baseline quantity.
Under existing law, a violation of the Public Utilities Act or an order, decision, rule, direction, demand, or requirement of the commission is a crime.
Because this bill would be a part of the act and because a violation of an order or decision of the commission implementing its requirements would be a crime, the bill would impose a state-mandated local program.
This bill would make legislative findings and declarations as to the necessity of a special statute for San Diego Gas and Electric.
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 no reimbursement is required by this act for a specified reason.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: YES  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.

 Section 739.13 is added to the Public Utilities Code, to read:

739.13.
 (a) For purposes of this section, the following definitions apply:
(1) “Eligible customer” means a customer who is 65 years of age or older and resides in a residence that is 2,000 square feet or less.
(2) “Total rate adjustment component” means a charge imposed by San Diego Gas and Electric on customers with usage in excess of 130 percent of baseline quantity that reflects the cost shift resulting from the limitations in residential tiered rates pursuant to Section 80110 of the Water Code, as added by Chapter 4 of the Statutes of 2001, 1st Extraordinary Session, and Section 739.9, as added by Chapter 337 of the Statutes of 2009.
(b) (1) Notwithstanding other law, the commission shall require San Diego Gas and Electric, upon application by an eligible customer, to exempt that customer from the total rate adjustment component.
(2) Paragraph (1) does not apply to any credit received by customers with usage up to 130 percent of baseline quantity pursuant to the total rate adjustment component.

SEC. 2.

 The Legislature finds and declares that a special statute is necessary and that a general statute cannot be made applicable within the meaning of Section 16 of Article IV of the California Constitution because of the unique circumstances faced by senior citizens who are customers of San Diego Gas and Electric.

SEC. 3.

 No reimbursement is required by this act pursuant to Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California Constitution because the only costs that may be incurred by a local agency or school district will be incurred because this act creates a new crime or infraction, eliminates a crime or infraction, or changes the penalty for a crime or infraction, within the meaning of Section 17556 of the Government Code, or changes the definition of a crime within the meaning of Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California Constitution.