San Diego Union-Tribune
Melissa Brandt, a vice president at East Bay Community Energy, a community choice aggregation program that serves about 1.5 million customers in Alameda County, proposed funding what’s called “public purpose programs” through state tax revenue instead of electric utility rates.
Public purpose programs include energy efficiency plans and programs such as California Alternate Rates for Energy (CARE) and Family Electric Rate Assistance Program (FERA) that provide low-income customers discounts on their monthly utility bills.
Brandt estimated that the cost of public purpose programs across the state comes to $2.7 billion a year. “Our lower-income customers who are not CARE- or FERA-eligible are paying just as much as customers who have much higher incomes,” Brandt said.