Tag Archives: Brian Nestande

Random Bill Blogging: AB 432

Frequently it seems that legislation gets just lost in the shuffle. Considering legislators generally carry 20-30 bills per session, and there are 120 legislators, well, that’s a lot of bills (3000!). With our shortage of media in the capitol, there’s just no way to cover all of them.

So, I’ve decided to try something different: random bill blogging.  I’ll just enter a number into the state senate’s dated search feature and see what comes up.  Of course, that will give me two options, one for the Assembly and one for the Senate.  This time, I randomly chose the number 432, and I got a solar bill from freshman Assembly member Brian Nestande (R-Palm Desert) and a crime victim restitution bill from Sen George Runner (R-Crazy).  My first inclination was to go with the Runner bill, but that bill was fairly ministerial and not all that exciting.  The Nestande bill is sort of interesting.  So, AB 432 it is.

Anyway, here’s the info page for AB 432. It provides for a pilot program in Palm Desert for “solar feed-in tariffs” and standard contracts associated with the tariffs for small electrical generators (ie homes with solar panels. First a few definitions:

“Solar feed-in tariff” means a schedule detailing the rates,rules, and terms of service that is filed by SCE and approved by the commission that controls the electrical corporation’s purchase of electricity delivered to the grid that is generated by a tariff-eligible solar energy system within the City of Palm Desert.

“Standard-offer contract” means a standardized contract that incorporates the terms of the solar feed-in tariff that is approved by the commission and made available to all persons proposing to construct and operate a solar energy system within the City of Palm Desert.

Basically, this bill would make small solar energy producers on a similar plane as larger energy providers. The contract and tariff sheet would be required to be clear and concise so that people who don’t really deal in the electricity generation markets could understand it. Once the contract is signed with the owner of a new solar installation, the electric company would be required to buy the energy at the stated rate for 20 years.

As a pilot program limited to one city, it will only apply to Southern California Edison (SCE). I’m sure SCE doesn’t particularly mind this bill as it would also help them meet their renewable portfolio standard (RPS) requirements. Many of the electric companies are running behind schedule and are looking for quick ways to get to 20% by 2010, the current standard.

I think this might be a worthwhile test to encourage and simplify the process of selling power back to the electric companies. As it is written, the bill seems fairly balanced in the interests of both SCE and the small generators. If this passes, I’ll be sure to follow how the pilot works.

The Conservative Slur of the Day: “Gray Davis Republican”

On the Democratic side, our big dogfight of a primary is up here in the Bay Area in SD-03. For the Republicans, it's down in Riverside County for SD-37. There Assemblyman John Benoit is duking it out with former Assemblyman Russ Bogh. CapAlert has more on the race.

The campaign has been a consistent flow of barbs between the two of them. But what I thought was most funny was the ongoing accusation from Bogh on Benoit being a “Gray Davis Republican.” There's even a website! Now, to any objective political watcher, Benoit has very little to do with Davis. However, he did vote for the Democratic budget a couple of times, so, I guess he's the evil spawn of Davis.

And this isn't the only place the phrase it is being used. Also in Riverside County, Brian Nestande, son of a former Assembly member, is also being called a “Gray Davis Republican. It looks like the Republicans are having some sort of bizarro race more than ever. They are fighting to be the ones that stood up against a sound budget. Yes, you heard me right, they want everybody to know that they want to cut more services. They want to cut education.

Apparently Benoit isn't vigilant enough about hacking our education budget to pieces. Apparently Bogh intends California to go to 50th in the nation in per pupil spending from our current 46th position. As Dave said on the podcast on Monday, look out Mississippi, we're coming for ya!