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PDFWAC 480-100-655

Public participation in a clean energy implementation plan (CEIP).

(1) Advisory groups. The utility must demonstrate and document how it considered input from advisory group members in the development of its CEIP and biennial CEIP update. Examples of how the utility may incorporate advisory group input include: Using modeling scenarios, sensitivities, and assumptions advisory group members proposed and using data and information supplied by advisory group members as inputs to plan development. As part of this process and consistent with (i) of this subsection, the utility must communicate to advisory group members about whether and how the utility used their input in its analysis and decision-making, including explanations for why the utility did not use an advisory group member's input.
(a) The utility must involve all advisory groups in the development of its CEIP and its biennial CEIP update, including the equity advisory group identified in (b) of this subsection;
(b) The utility must maintain and regularly engage an external equity advisory group to advise the utility on equity issues including, but not limited to, vulnerable population designation, equity customer benefit indicator development, data support and development, and recommended approaches for the utility's compliance with WAC 480-100-610 (4)(c)(i). The utility must encourage and include the participation of environmental justice and public health advocates, tribes, and representatives from highly impacted communities and vulnerable populations in addition to other relevant groups;
(c) The utility must convene advisory groups, with reasonable advance notice, at regular meetings open to the public during the planning process. A utility must notify advisory groups of company and commission public meetings scheduled to address its CEIP and biennial CEIP update;
(d) Engaging with advisory groups for the purposes of developing the CEIP does not relieve the utility of the obligation to continue to convene and engage these groups for their individual topical duties. This section does not supersede existing rules related to those groups;
(e) Nothing in this section limits the utility from convening and engaging public advisory groups on other topics;
(f) Participation in an advisory group does not restrict groups and individuals from commenting on CEIP filings before the commission;
(g) The utility must make available completed presentation materials for each advisory group meeting at least three business days prior to the meeting. The utility may update materials as needed;
(h) The utility must make all of its data inputs and files used to develop its CEIP available to the commission in native file format and in an easily accessible format. The utility may make confidential information available by providing it to the commission pursuant to WAC 480-07-160. The utility should minimize its designation of information in the CEIP as confidential. Nonconfidential contents of the CEIP, biennial update, and supporting documentation as well as nonconfidential data inputs and files must be available for advisory group review in an easily accessible format upon request. Nothing in this subsection limits the protection of records containing commercial information under RCW 80.04.095;
(i) As part of the filing of its CEIP and biennial update with the commission, the utility must provide a summary of advisory group comments received during the development of its CEIP and biennial update and the utility's responses, including whether issues raised in the comments were addressed and incorporated into the final CEIP as well as documentation of the reasons for rejecting public input. The utility must include the summary as an appendix to the final CEIP. Comments with similar content or input may be consolidated with a single utility response.
(2) Participation plan and education. The utility must involve advisory groups in developing the timing and extent of meaningful and inclusive public participation throughout the development and duration of the CEIP, including outreach and education serving vulnerable populations and highly impacted communities. On or before May 1st of each odd-numbered year, the utility must file with the commission a plan that outlines its schedule, methods, and goals for public participation and education both during the development of its CEIP and throughout the implementation of the plan. The utility must include the following in its participation plan:
(a) Timing, methods, and language considerations for seeking and considering input from:
(i) Vulnerable populations and highly impacted communities for the creation of or updates to customer benefit indicators and weighting factors for the utility's compliance with WAC 480-100-610 (4)(c)(i); and
(ii) All customers, including vulnerable populations and highly impacted communities, for the creation of, or updates to, customer benefit indicators and weighting factors for the utility's compliance with WAC 480-100-610 (4)(c)(ii) and (iii).
(b) Identification of barriers to public participation including, but not limited to, language, cultural, economic, or other factors, and strategies for reducing barriers to public participation;
(c) Plans to provide information and data in broadly understood terms through meaningful participant education;
(d) A proposed schedule of public meetings or engagement, including advisory group meetings;
(e) A proposed list of significant topics that will be discussed;
(f) The date the utility will file the final CEIP with the commission; and
(g) A link to a website accessible to the public and managed by the utility, to which the utility posts and makes publicly available the following information:
(i) Meeting summaries and materials for all relevant meetings, including materials for future meetings;
(ii) A current schedule of advisory group meetings and significant topics to be covered;
(iii) Information on how the public may participate in CEIP development; and
(iv) Final plans and biennial CEIP updates posted within thirty days of final commission action.
(3) Customer notices. Within thirty days of filing the utility's CEIP, the utility must inform customers of the filing and requirements under chapter 19.405 RCW, briefly summarize the utility's CEIP, and inform customers of how they may comment on the utility's filing. The notice must include:
(a) The date the notice is issued;
(b) The utility's name and address;
(c) A website link that navigates to the full CEIP;
(d) A statement that the commission has the authority to approve the CEIP, with or without conditions, or reject the CEIP;
(e) A description of how customers may contact the utility if they have specific questions or need additional information about the CEIP; and
(f) Public involvement language pursuant to WAC 480-100-194 (4)(j).
[Statutory Authority: RCW 80.01.040, 80.04.160, and chapters 80.28, 19.280, and 19.405 RCW. WSR 21-02-022 (Dockets UE-191023 and UE-190698, General Order 601), ยง 480-100-655, filed 12/28/20, effective 12/31/20.]
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