Board Meeting Minutes April 2, 2009 UC Merced, Dean’s Conference Room 5200 N. Lake Road Merced, California
Welcome & Introductions Board Members: Ricardo Amon Jeff Briltz William Delain Phil Erro Tim Fisher Laura Fultz‐Stout Steve Geil Carole Goldsmith Gary Hanson Roger McNeil Mark Stout Diana Westmoreland Pedrozo Jeff Wright
Alternates: Devon Jones Lisa Van de Water (Tom Jordon) Joy Warren (Allen Short) Colby Morrow (Colby Wells) Ron Durbin Staff: Paul Johnson Courtney Kalashian Cynthia Downing Affiliates: Brandon Apparcel, Renewable Solar Energy Ronald Stack, Renewable Solar Energy Christine Tien Hanafi Fraval Frank Ferral
Jeff Wright called the meeting of the Board of Directors of the San Joaquin Valley Clean Energy Organization (SJVCEO) to order at 10:00ap.m. Jeff welcomed and thanked everyone for coming to the UC Merced campus, and provided attendees with a copy of the UC Merced Climate Action Plan. Jeff explained that the university will post the document electronically.
Approval of Minutes of January 29, 2009 Board Meeting
The minutes of the January 29, 2009 SJVCEO Board of Directors were approved on a motion made by Gary Hanson, seconded by Steve Geil, and unanimously approved by the board.
Approval of Financial Statements
Cynthia Downing presented the organizations financial statements through February 28, 2009. The financial reports were accepted on a motion made by Roger McNeil, seconded by Diana Westmoreland Pedrozo, and unanimously approved by the board.
SJVCEO Board Meeting Minutes – April 2, 2009
Update on Energy Stimulus/DOE Block Grants
A. Allocations to Cities and Counties Paul explained that how we proceed is up to the board. He recommended that everyone access the Alliance to Save Energy link that was sent out in the board packet; it is an excellent resource and shows the allocation of stimulus finds to cities. There is $42 billion available for energy related projects, and $36 billion originates from the Department of Energy (DOE). Numerous other agencies are also offering funding to jurisdictions. There are three areas of interest: 1. State Energy Program: Paul provided an explanation of funding processes 2. Energy Efficiency Block Grants: Provides clean energy work for cities and counties. There is $3.2 billion available; $2.8 billion will go to states, cities, and counties; the remaining $400 million will come through a National competition to fund innovative Energy Solutions. 3. Weatherization (DOE): $5 billion available for low income weatherization, increasing previous allowances to $6,000 per unit. B. Guidelines for Block Grants There are two pieces that make up the distribution of EE Block Grant funds: 1. $2.8 billion in direct grants will go to large cities (>35,000 population; includes net population and tribes). In California, $350 million will be given direct to cities. 2. $50 million will go tot the State for subsequent distribution. The focus of this money is on job creation and reduction of fossil fuels. Paul explained that there is a tilt in how money is allocated to jurisdictions (effected by “daytime population”), but there is $27 million coming to the 16 largest cities and counties of the San Joaquin Valley. We have a unique opportunity to provided Value Added Services to the largest jurisdictions; we stand out as being an objective organization and being a part of the California Partnership for the San Joaquin Valley (CAPSJV)
C. Deadlines and Timelines Paul explained to the board that the motto of the funding has become, “spend it wisely, spend it quickly”. The guidelines included in the board packet were referenced—these guidelines explain what can and cannot be done. Application Deadlines: 1. May 26, 2009 for requests to the California Energy Commission (CEC)/ State for cities and counties with less than 35,000 populations. 2. June 25, 2009 for direct DOE funding requests for cities and counties larger than 35,000. Applications are encouraged to be in before the deadlines, then cities and counties have up to 120 days after applying to submit their strategy. Paul explained that the application is the ‘why’ and the strategy is the ‘how’. The money should be making its way into cities and counties at the end of September.
D. Proposed SJVCEO Suite of Services for Cities and Counties Handout with Suite of Services detail included in the board packet. Services are grouped by direct funds to jurisdictions. Cynthia Downing is contacting cities and counties to see where they are in the process. Together, Paul and Cynthia are working to refine the list and find out what cities need and how the SJVCEO can help. Among the need and drive to spend the money quickly there has to be a balance between jobs creation and building an energy future. Paul and Cynthia went through the handout on proposed services with the board. Paul and Cynthia are working to create a team of consultants—there are specific guidelines of who is on the team. The organization needs to develop a board policy for members who choose to provide services—we want to prevent problems before they arise. Early conversations show that cities and counties need assistance with RFP and selection of vendors; some are looking for a turnkey operation to take the project from start to finish. We will need to work with service providers, utilities, the Air District, etc. Questions and Comments: SJVCEO Board Meeting Minutes – April 2, 2009
Bill DeLain: With local governments cutting back on staff it seems like what governments can actually do is pretty limited. Can SJVCEO patch these leaks? Paul Johnson: Yes. This is based on direct funds—5% can go to staff costs, 20% to nonprofits. Motion: Board to approve Suite of Services. Questions and Comments: Cynthia Downing: This is how we want to engage. Gary Hanson: An approval will allow the staff to reach out to resource people and cities. Steve Geil: The phrase “acting as a general contractor” doesn’t sit well. Paul Johnson: We can clarify. Turnkey may be too strong a term. Cynthia Downing: It is really a way to express the ability to connect shared ventures. We are working on a database to show shared projects. Carole Goldsmith: Plan looks great! But, each city has different needs; we want you to be able to be nimble and not hindered by having to come back to the board. Tim Fisher: How did you choose the team? Cynthia Downing: We worked with the utilities; compile a list of RFP vendors. Paul has worked on the technical operators. Paul Johnson: There is a definite interview process involved. Bill Delain: This is more a motion to approve the concept… Gary Hanson: We can adjust as we go... Ron Durbin: Questions about the fee for service component, we can go after grants when the service is free, but this is quasi‐business. It’s a good framework for getting grant money, but as a business requires a higher burden of proof. Steve Geil: the EDC is doing the same thing, but it’s funded through investors. We should have prospects join as investors to the SJVCEO. Tim Fisher: Fee is going to be an issue. CAPSJV goal was to bring us all together, not create a fee generating association. Ricardo Amon: We could pursue Technical Assistance Grants, where 25% of cost for the service would be paid by the end user. Cynthia Downing: this was only for non‐competitive grants, not going after other grants. The clearinghouse “fee” is to cover the man‐hours time; we would be doing the work that cities don’t have the staff to do. Jeff Wright: perhaps we precede the bullet with “we will assist with obtaining these services”? Paul Johnson: We need to generate funds… Cynthia Downing: …the City of Fresno is considering $75,000 to “partner” with the SJVCEO Carole Goldsmith: Keep in mind there is a time limit here; we don’t have the time to get grants to then partner Mark Stout: Just keep in mind that this all needs to match DOE terminology Revised Motion: Board to approve the Suite of Services as a framework so that staff can move forward by Bill Delain, second provided by Gary Hanson, and approved by the board. E. Shovel Ready Projects Paul explained the process through which the CAPSJV solicited “shovel ready” project. The SJVCEO compiled all energy related submissions—we received 300 project ideas, totaling approximately $1.3 billion in funding requests! Comments: Gary Hanson: to put this in context, for an eight city area with $1.2 billion in funding requests we are already four times the State allotment. Jeff Wright: the SJVCEO is in a position to have a BIG impact! Paul Johnson: we can help jurisdictions get this right—these projects have to stand up to scrutiny. F. Other Stimulus Activities American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funding for the Ag sector?
Key Strategic Opportunities
A. VIEW Project SJVCEO Board Meeting Minutes – April 2, 2009
Paul reminded the board that this is the opportunity that the SJVCEO is pursuing with SCE and So Cal Gas affecting Tulare County. There has been a good deal of back and forth, but the terms have been accepted. There is a meeting next week with SCE and involved parties. The funding starts small in 2009 bridge funding, then ramps up in 2010 and 2011.
B. Greening Arvin Right now we are continuing our work with Arvin, but it is very low profile. Questions: Frank Ferral: Is the organization still pursuing perusing the objectives that were set? Paul Johnson: Yes. We are generally on track‐‐it is just a matter of focus.
C. RESCO Grant Jeff Manternach was going to put together the grant, but the project never came together with Gallo Farms.
Committee Reports A. Sustainable Cities Committee. Jeff Briltz Jeff reported that there was little to present. There has been a lot of “behind the scenes” work going on with help from Rollie. To date there have been two fantastic workshops, in February and March, and we have developed a good working relationship with the California League of Cities. B. Bioenergy Chair Ricardo Amon Ricardo informed the board that he has “delivered” the second issue of the Bioenergy blog. Ricardo asked the board to consider a new committee, perhaps having a slot specifically for the Ag sector not dealing with Bioenergy. Phil Erro thanked Ricardo for all of his efforts. C. Green Workforce Roger McNeil Paul reported for Roger that workforce development is more important now than ever. Roger is very involved in the REXPO Recycling Exposition on May 20th in Stockton. Flyers were handed out to the board. Roger will remain on the board, but will not be able to serve as the workforce chair; Carole Goldsmith will take his place as the workgroup chair.
Other Business A. 2009 Board Nominations Cynthia Downing Cynthia reported that the appointment process had just wrapped. Gary Hanson chaired the nominations committee; the resulting list is included in the board packet. Most members chose to stay on, some exceptions include Roger Christy who will help to produce a replacement from within Chevron; Jeff Manternach who has already stepped off the board in order to be eligible to provide services to the organization, and Ryan Kerr due to Consol’s conflict of interest. Paul Johnson noted that Jeff’s departure from the board leaves the organization with an opening in Madera County. Invitations to join the board have been made to Hillary Baird, CA League of Cities, Christine Tien, and Frank Ferral. Cynthia asked the board for an approval of the slate of nominations. Motion: Approval of the slate of nominations. Comments: Jeff Wright: Look for tribal representation; this would be an indicator to the CAPSJV that we are pursuing a more comprehensive representation. Bill Delain motioned that the board accept the list, and it be forwarded to the CAPSJV, Carole Goldsmith provided the second, and the board approved the motion. B. SJVCEO Staffing Changes Paul Johnson Paul Johnson announced that he has been offered an opportunity to work as a consultant for the DOE. In this role he will be responsible for helping creating the field structure for the new DOE energy programs. Once his
SJVCEO Board Meeting Minutes – April 2, 2009
employment contract is finalized Paul will be employed on about a half time basis by DOE. He will look to transition the work that he is doing with the SJVCEO, but expects to still remain involved as a consultant. . At the Executive Committee meeting in March, Paul recommended that Cynthia Downing assume much of the responsibilities that he has been performing. The executive committee approved the recommendation. Comment: Ricardo Amon: Thank you, Paul. Great appreciation for you and you made this happen. It has been a pleasure to work with you. *Round of applause for Paul Johnson Cynthia Downing: This is an interim position. Her intention is to get the VIEW project on solid ground while the board considers a final candidate. She emphasized that Paul has to stay on in a technical capacity! C. 25x25 State Alliance Mini Grant Cynthia Downing Cynthia reported that the SJVCEO was awarded this grant for $4,000. The money will be used to produce an online inventory of energy projects in the Valley. D. 2009 Farming Clean Energy Conference Cynthia Downing Cynthia asked the board for their blessing to move forward with efforts to host FCEC2009. Possible dates for the conference include the two middle weeks of November, or the week following Thanksgiving. Strategic Energy Innovations (SEI) is pursuing grant funding from the USDA with the SJVCEO; SJVCEO will hold the grant once it is received. Ricardo Amon volunteered his services to the conference again in 2009. Cynthia suggested that a conference sub0committee convene to start planning. Tim Fisher said that the Great Valley Center will provide support. E. Fund Raising Cynthia Downing Now that the board has given approval tot the suite of services framework Cynthia will be able to pursue funding from the Sempra Foundation. Pursuit of competitive grants will resume after June 26! Steve Geil volunteered that he was happy to assist in fundraising, but not grants!
Wrap Up and Adjourn
The meeting adjourned at 1:05 p.m. The next meeting will be June 11th from 10â€?1 at the AGTAC Center, Light Lab, in Tulare, California Meeting minutes were recorded by Courtney Kalashian and submitted by Jeff Wright, Vice Chair.
Jeff Wright, Vice Chair Board of Directors, San Joaquin Valley Clean Energy Organization
SJVCEO Board Meeting Minutes â€“ April 2, 2009