BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    



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          Date of Hearing:  April 27, 2016


                        ASSEMBLY COMMITTEE ON APPROPRIATIONS


                               Lorena Gonzalez, Chair


          AB  
          2903 (Committee on Utilities and Commerce) - As Introduced March  
          3, 2016


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          Urgency:  No  State Mandated Local Program:  NoReimbursable:  No


          SUMMARY:


          This committee bill deletes obsolete language in the Public  
          Utilities Code related to wharfingers and warehousemen and the  
          California Consumer Power and Conservation Financing Authority  
          (CPA).  Specifically, this bill:  


          1)Deletes the authority for warehousemen and wharfingers to  








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            condemn property.


          2)Requires the Attorney General (AG) to represent the Department  
            of Finance (DOF) and to succeed all rights, claims, powers,  
            and entitlements of the CPA in any litigation or settlement  
            relating to the 2000-02 energy crisis.


          3)Repeals the California Consumer Power and Conservation  
            Financing Authority Act.


          FISCAL EFFECT:


          Minor, if any, additional state costs.


          COMMENTS:


          1)Purpose.  This committee bill deletes obsolete provisions and  
            updates the code regarding CPA succession.


          2)Background.  Prior to the eighties, warehousemen and  
            wharfingers were considered public utilities and as such had  
            the authority to condemn property.  When the Legislature  
            removed warehousemen and wharfingers as utilities, the  
            authority to condemn property remained in code.  This bill  
            deletes that authority.


            The CPA was created during the height of the energy crisis in  
            2001 to ensure the state had reliable, affordable electrical  
            power.  The CPA was authorized to issue up to $5 billion in  
            revenue bonds to finance various activities.









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            CPA duties diminished as California recovered from the 2000-02  
            energy crisis and other state energy agencies and private  
            entities were performing similar activities.  The CPA's  
            authority to finance or approve any new program, enterprise,  
            or project sunset on January 1, 2007.  This bill deletes the  
            CPA and its authorities from statute.


            The US Supreme Court recently ruled that energy companies can  
            be sued under state antitrust laws for illegally manipulating  
            natural gas prices during the 2000-02 energy crisis. As a  
            result, there are likely additional claims related to the  
            energy crisis ahead.


            This bill requires the AG to represent DOF and to succeed all  
            rights, claims, powers and entitlements of the CPA in any  
            litigation or settlement relating to the 2000-02 energy  
            crisis.


          





          Analysis Prepared by:Jennifer Galehouse / APPR. / (916)  
          319-2081

















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