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Three House Democrats announced this week they will holds hearings “to assess the effects of climate change and the need for action.

Energy and Commerce Ranking Member Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-NJ), Natural Resources Ranking Member Raúl M. Grijalva (D-AZ) and Science, Space and Technology Ranking Member Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-TX) announced the plans.

“Our committees plan to work closely together to aggressively assess the public health, economic and environmental impacts of climate change and to explore the best solutions to combat this challenge,” the three House members said.

Democrats will will hold the House Majority as of January 2019.

Read the full announcement here.

By Patrick Welch, CMUA Legislative Director for Energy

The legislative Fall Recess began this year at midnight on August 31, after nine months of hectic and fast-paced legislative activity in Sacramento. This time period is an opportunity for legislators to campaign and spend time in their districts attending community events. For legislative staff and advocates in Sacramento, the Fall Recess is a change of pace and an opportunity to think critically about key issues, gain deeper knowledge and new insights, and build new and better relationships with key partners (or foes). …

By Matt Williams, CMUA

Assemblymember Laura Friedman

First-term Assemblymember Laura Friedman acknowledges she is still relatively new to the complexities of statewide policymaking. But it looks like she is far along the learning curve already. Since taking office in late 2016, Friedman has leaned adeptly on her deep experience in local government to make an impact on some of the state’s most pressing water and energy issues.

A Democrat, Friedman serves California’s 43rd Assembly district — an area encompassing Glendale, Burbank and parts of Los Angeles. She lives in Glendale, where she is a former city councilmember and mayor.

“I believe that if…

Customer service, energy storage, high-speed internet — California’s newest municipal utilities juggle a variety of challenges.

By John Egan

Mike McLellan, an electric utility program coordinator for Moreno Valley Electric Utility, staffs the utility’s booth at the city’s July 4 celebration.

Several municipal utilities were created amid historic changes in California’s electricity market after the state’s power crisis of 2000–2001.

In the 18 years since then, these publicly owned utilities have grown and changed with the times. But they have always been deeply rooted in their local community.

For these newer publicly owned utilities, going the extra mile has been an imperative from the beginning.

For instance, Corona Department of Water & Power General Manager Tom Moody recalled the utility changing out a distribution transformer a few months ago at a local movie cinema in the middle of…

By Patrick Welch, CMUA Legislative Director for Energy

When it comes to achieving a carbon free and affordable electric grid, California needs forward-looking energy policies that do not limit technological or resource choices, which could include natural gas power plants and other baseload resources that provide continuous power. That’s the takeaway from a recently published study conducted by MIT researchers.

Our state leads the nation in electric grid decarbonization and, in a further commitment to carbon reduction, Governor Brown recently signed into law SB 100, which strengthens California’s Renewables Portfolio Standard (RPS) program, already the most progressive rule of its…

By Matt Williams, CMUA

Dan Beans and Assistant Director Mark Haddad (left) talk with local radio show hosts at the REU open house event.

It’s no secret California’s electric industry has been radically transformed the past decade through the rise of distributed energy resources, California’s renewable energy mandates, net metering requirements, increased customer expectations and a swath of other factors.

Simply put, many local utilities — understandably — have been challenged to keep up with the times.

At the northernmost end of the Central Valley, Redding Electric Utility, like some other publicly owned utilities, came to realize its old model of doing business — where individual business divisions such as customer service, energy resources, and transmission and distribution worked separately…

By Danielle Blacet, Director for Water, CMUA; and Paul D. Jones II, General Manager, Eastern Municipal Water District

We’re close to the finish line in helping many more Californians have access to safe drinking water.

Much discussion this year in the Legislature has centered on the best way to provide a lasting solution for more than 300 non-compliant water systems, whose customers’ tap water is too dangerous to drink. It is a public health crisis that the Legislature has finally taken a giant step to solve.

A bill addressing these failing water systems has moved to the desk of Governor…

Our Q&A with General Manager and CEO Jeffrey Kightlinger

Jeffrey Kightlinger, general manager and CEO of Metropolitan Water District. Photo courtesy MWD

Jeffrey Kightlinger has been general manager and CEO of Metropolitan Water District of Southern California for the past 12 years.

Metropolitan, a regional wholesaler, delivers water to 26 member public agencies serving 19 million people living in Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, San Diego and Ventura counties.

It’s a big job with mind-boggling scale. Metropolitan delivers an average of 1.7 billion gallons of water each day to a 5,200-square-mile service area. It owns and operates the Colorado River Aqueduct, 16 hydroelectric facilities, nine reservoirs, nearly 1,000 miles of large-scale pipes and five water treatment plants.

Metropolitan is the largest…

By Matt Williams, CMUA

State Sen. Bob Hertzberg

State Sen. Robert Hertzberg has witnessed or participated in many moments that have shaped California’s energy and water policy. He was speaker of the state Assembly in 2000 and 2001 when California suffered a major electricity crisis, and this year played an integral role passing legislation that creates long-term water use efficiency standards for the state.

In one way or another, in the public arena or the private sector, Hertzberg has worked in the water and energy world for the past four decades. He wrote a major paper on water in 1976 and started his first…

Legislation co-sponsored by CMUA and Eastern Municipal Water District that would create a new pathway for California’s small, failing water systems to achieve and maintain compliance is headed to Governor Brown for his consideration.

Assembly Bill 2050 — The Small System Water Authority Act of 2018 — takes substantial steps toward achieving the goal of ensuring safe, clean, and reliable drinking water for all Californians. The bill would enable the creation of small system water authorities that are authorized to absorb, improve and competently operate currently non-compliant public water systems that may or may not share boundaries.

“Despite a…


The California Municipal Utilities Association represents the common interests of a diverse coalition of California’s publicly owned utilities.

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