BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    

                                                                  SB 1198
                                                                  Page  1

          Date of Hearing:   August 4, 2010

                                Felipe Fuentes, Chair

                     SB 1198 (Huff) - As Amended:  June 30, 2010 

          Policy Committee:                               
                        Natural Resources                       7-0

          Urgency:     No                   State Mandated Local Program:  
          No     Reimbursable:


          This bill:

          1)Delays implementation of the California Energy Commission's  
            (CEC's) television energy efficiency labeling regulations  
            until July 1, 2011.

          2)Makes the CEC regulations effective July 1, 2011 if a Federal  
            Trade Commission (FTC) labeling rule for televisions is not  
            effective by that date, and continues the CEC regulations in  
            effect until FTC final labeling rule is effective.

           FISCAL EFFECT  

          Minor absorbable cost for the CEC to conduct an abbreviated  
          rulemaking to modify its existing regulations and to respond to  
          public inquiries regarding the modification.


           1)Background  . On November 18, 2009, the CEC adopted television  
            energy efficiency standards for new televisions offered for  
            sale in California beginning in 2011. According to the  
            commission, televisions represent approximately 10% of a  
            home's electricity use, and the first phase of regulations  
            would reduce the energy consumption of new televisions by  
            approximately one-third. A second phase of regulations, for  
            products sold beginning in 2013, would reduce energy use by  
            approximately one-half. In addition, the CEC is requiring  
            labeling for televisions sold in California in accordance with  


                                                                  SB 1198
                                                                  Page  2

            their efficiencyy regulations. The labels must clearly  
            identify a product's "on" mode power consumption in watts-the  
            rate at which the product consumes energy.

            The FTC's Appliance Labeling Rules require energy disclosures  
            for a variety of covered products, including home appliances,  
            lighting, and plumbing products. Prior to the CEC proposing  
            its own approach to energy-use labeling, the FTC proposed  
            earlier this year to extend the labeling rule to televisions.  
            The FTC proposal would require each television to have  
            specific information, including annual energy costs based on a  
            uniform electricity rate and on-mode usage rate and 19 hours  
            per day in standby mode. There is no statutory deadline for a  
            final rulemaking, but upon final issuance, the labeling  
            requirements will become effective in six months to allow for  
            state implementation.

           2)Purpose  . The sponsors of SB 1198 (Consumer Electronics  
            Association [CEA]) are concerned that the CEC's requirements  
            for energy labeling on televisions disregarded the federal  
            rulemaking already underway. Moreover, CEA notes the CEC's  
            labeling requirements have presented several interpretation  
            problems for both manufacturers and retailers, and that the  
            requirements were not based on a careful approach to consumer  
            product labeling and thus, for example, included font size  
            requirements that are impractical in the marketplace.

           3)Opposition  . The CEC believes that the FTC labels could be  
            misleading. By conveying operating costs in dollars, compared  
            with the CEC labels that convey power consumption, the  
            commission argues that Californians could be misled into  
            believing a television is cheaper to operate than it really is  
            due to different energy rate structures across the country.  
            The CEC states this bill dilutes CEC's standards because the  
            federal standards are almost always less stringent that  

           Analysis Prepared by  :    Chuck Nicol / APPR. / (916) 319-2081