Clean Energy Alliance approves 2022-23 budget

The Clean Energy Alliance
The Clean Energy Alliance is a community choice energy program that includes the cities of Del Mar, Solana Beach and Carlsbad.
(Luis Sinco/Los Angeles Times)

The Clean Energy Alliance board of directors approved the agency’s budget for the 2022-23 fiscal year after making a few cuts to ensure that it meets its reserve requirements.

“We did go back afterwards and review our budget, and we were able to adjust the budget and bring the expenditures in line to ensure that we do have a 5% reserve contribution at just over $4 million,” said Barbara Boswell, the CEO of the Clean Energy Alliance.

The cities of San Marcos and Escondido have also decided to join the CEA, leading to an increase in the revenues and expenditures in the 2022-23 budget.

Last month, CEA staff members were projecting $80.8 million in projected revenue and $78.4 million in expenditures, which leaves a reserve fund equal to 4% of revenue. CEA policy is to maintain at least a 5% reserve.

A month later, projected revenue remained the same while expenditures dropped to about $76.7 million to meet the reserve requirement. Energy supply costs and consultants were two of the expenditures that CEA staff reduced in the updated projections, based on data and other factors.

The CEA, one of the state’s newest Community Choice Aggregation programs, has been delivering energy to residential and business customers for about one year since it was launched by the cities of Del Mar, Solana Beach and Carlsbad. CCAs give customers an alternative to their traditional power suppliers, such as San Diego Gas & Electric, by offering more renewable energy and a slight reduction to their utility bills.

The Clean Energy Alliance also contracted with Burke, Williams & Sorensen for general counsel services for a maximum amount of $120,000. The lead attorney in the firm’s San Diego office is Johanna Canlas, who also serves as the city attorney for Solana Beach. The CEA previously contracted with Richards Watson & Gershon for general counsel services.