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SB-457 Biomethane: gas corporations.(2019-2020)

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Date Published: 10/02/2019 09:00 PM
SB457:v96#DOCUMENT

Senate Bill No. 457
CHAPTER 479

An act to amend Section 399.19 of the Public Utilities Code, relating to energy.

[ Approved by Governor  October 02, 2019. Filed with Secretary of State  October 02, 2019. ]

LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


SB 457, Hueso. Biomethane: gas corporations.
Under existing law, the Public Utilities Commission has regulatory authority over public utilities, including gas 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 requires the commission to adopt policies and programs that promote the in-state production and distribution of biomethane, as defined, and that facilitate the development of a variety of sources of in-state biomethane. The commission has adopted 2 decisions implementing these requirements, the 2nd of which adopted a 5-year monetary incentive program effective June 11, 2015, for biomethane projects. Existing law requires the commission to modify the monetary incentive program in specified respects and to extend the program, as modified, until December 31, 2021.
This bill would require the commission to extend the program until December 31, 2026, or until all available program funds are expended, whichever occurs first.
Under existing law, a violation of the Public Utilities Act or any order, decision, rule, direction, demand, or requirement of the commission is a crime.
Because the bill extends the monetary incentive program and requires continuation of action by the commission to implement certain requirements, and because failure to comply with these commission actions would be a crime, the bill would impose a state-mandated local program by extending the operation of a crime.
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 399.19 of the Public Utilities Code is amended to read:

399.19.
 (a) The commission shall modify, and extend until December 31, 2026, or until all available program funds are expended, whichever occurs first, the monetary incentive program for biomethane projects adopted in Decision 15-06-029 (June 11, 2015), Decision Regarding the Costs of Compliance with Decision 14-01-034 and Adoption of Biomethane Promotion Policies and Program, as follows:
(1) Except for a dairy cluster biomethane project, the total available incentive limitation for a project shall be increased from one million five hundred thousand dollars ($1,500,000) to three million dollars ($3,000,000).
(2) For a dairy cluster biomethane project, the total available incentive limitation shall be raised to five million dollars ($5,000,000), which may be used for interconnection costs and costs incurred for gathering lines to help reduce emissions of short-lived climate pollutants pursuant to Section 39730 of the Health and Safety Code. For purposes of this subdivision, a dairy cluster biomethane project means a biomethane project of three or more dairies in close proximity to one another employing multiple facilities for the capture of biogas that is transported by multiple gathering lines to a centralized processing facility where the biogas is processed to meet the biomethane standards adopted by the commission pursuant to subdivisions (c) and (d) of Section 25421 of the Health and Safety Code and injected into the pipeline of the gas corporation through a single interconnection.
(b) This section shall remain in effect only until January 1, 2027, and as of that date is repealed, unless a later enacted statute, that is enacted before January 1, 2027, deletes or extends that date.

SEC. 2.

 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.