Proposition 39

Proposition 39 allocates revenue to local education agencies to support energy efficiency and clean energy generation projects, along with related improvements and repairs that contribute to reduced operating costs and improved health and safety conditions in public schools. 

Proposition 39, the California Clean Energy Jobs Act, changed the tax code and is expected to generate program funds through fiscal year 2017-2018. Local Educational Agencies (LEAs) were awarded $381 million for fiscal year 2013-2014 for energy efficiency and clean energy projects throughout California. LEAs include county offices of education, school districts and charter schools.

It is expected that Humboldt County LEAs will be able to access approximately $2.1 million annually for energy projects, although future funding is contingent on tax revenue generation and appropriations. First year funds (fiscal year 2013-2014) can be used for planning (where requested in advance) and to hire an energy manager and train classified staff. Many Humboldt County schools were able to make this request.See the California Department of Education’s Proposition 39 website for more information on first year funding awards.

Accessing the funds starts with identifying opportunities for energy savings. The Redwood Coast Energy Authority will assist interested LEAs in getting started. Please see below for more information, or contact Allison Campbell or Katie Koscielak at (707)269-1700.



  • Improve energy efficiency
  • Reduce operational expenses
  • Create jobs and develop the local workforce
  • Allocate resources for underserved students

Grant Period

Prop 39 is expected to generate funds for five years, beginning in fiscal year 2013-2014 and ending in fiscal year 2017-2018.
Local Award

Humboldt County local educational agencies were collectively awarded a total $3.14 million in fiscal year 2013-14, with projected total funding of $10.5 million over five years. Future annual allocations are expected to be an average of around $2.1 million per fiscal year.
Eligible Projects

Eligible projects must meet cost-effectiveness criteria and may include a mix of measures such as lighting, HVAC, window, door, and building envelope retrofits, and renewable energy projects. Eligible facilities include classrooms, auditoriums, multipurpose rooms, gymnasiums, cafeterias, kitchens, libraries, media centers, computer labs, and science labs.
Program Timeline

The State has defined a step by step process for implementing Prop 39 funding:

  1. Obtain utility data and set-up benchmarking.
  2. Complete energy audits.
  3. Prioritize and sequence energy projects.
  4. Submit expenditure plans.
  5. Conduct bidding and complete projects.
  6. Report on energy project results.

Other Programs

Funds were also awarded for support activities:

Ways to stretch Prop 39 funding:

  • Redwood Coast Energy Authority and PG&E - Energy Watch
  • Program Loans
  • Bonds

Collaborating Agencies

  • California Energy Commission
  • Department of Education
  • California Conservation Corps
  • Redwood Coast Energy Authority
  • Humboldt County Office of Education
  • Pacific Gas & Electric Company
  • California Public Utilities Commission
  • California Workforce Investment Board
  • Department of General Service, Division of the State Architect



Resource Link

California Energy Commission (CEC) approved measures

Proposition 39 Implementation Guidelines, Appendix B 

Deadlines associated with Prop 39

Proposition 39 Implementation Guidelines, Page 8

Information about leased facilities

CEC Proposition 39 FAQs, Charter Schools & Eligibility

Information about Charter Schools

CEC Proposition 39 FAQs, Charter Schools & Eligibility

Funding allocations

Proposition 39 Entitlements document, CDE Funding Results

Approved Energy Expenditure Plans

Download latest list from CEC Website (menu on right)

Prop 39 financing options

CEC Energy Efficiency Financing Webpage

Future year funding estimations

CEC Energy Expenditure Plan Tips, Question 2

Application for 2 years of funding

Fiscal Year 14-15, CDE Webpage

Savings calculators

CEC Homepage, under Energy Expenditure Plans

Savings-to-Investment Ratio (SIR) information

Prop 39 Implementation Guidelines, Appendix E (E-1 to E-3) 

Scope of work for RCEA on Prop 39 activities

Exhibit A of the RCEA Contract

Energy Audits

California Conservation Corps

Proposition 39 offers a few different no-cost energy audit services; one of them is offered through the California Conservation Corps (CCC).  Please find detailed instructions below for completing an application packet for this service.

Redwood Coast Energy Authority can assist with facilitating the compilation and submittal of complete application packets.  You may also use the instructions below and submit them directly to the CCC, but note that if you choose this option and are contracted with RCEA for Prop 39 Energy Management services, you should notify and send copies to RCEA. For more information on this process, please contact the Proposition 39 Team or visit the CCC website.  

In order to submit an application packet for their services, complete the following items:
1. CCC ApplicationComplete and submit this form one time for your entire LEA.

2. Project Worksheet(s). Fill out one worksheet per site that you would like to have surveyed (please contact us to request the Project Worksheet template).

3. Utility Release Authorizations. Please complete both authorization forms; note that you need only submit the RCEA form to our agency and not to the CCC.
4. One year of utility data. If your LEA purchases utilities from any other company than PG&E, please include the following information for these utilities (RCEA can complete this step for utilities purchased from PG&E):
  • 1 year of electric use data (running July 1 to June 31) for the year prior to your application submittal
  • 1 year of heating use* data (running July 1 to June 31) for the year prior to your application submittal.
*For propane please note that you will need to submit one year of purchase receipts.

5. Site Maps. You must provide site maps for all sites you wish to have surveyed.

Frequently Asked Questions

Funding Questions

1. How do I recieve Proposition 39 funding?
Submit an Energy Expenditure Plan (EEP) and receive approval from the California Energy Commission.  After approval, funds will be disbursed (which may be all at once or over several years depending on the amount allocated per year).  (Source)

2. Does a local education agency's (LEA's) Proposition 39 award funding for a year rollover from one year to the next if no expended in that year?
Yes. (Source)

3. Can an LEA save each annual award and apply it to the project in year 5 or is it required to spend the funds the year it is awarded?
There is no requirement to spend the funding in the fiscal year it is awarded; however, the Energy Commission encourages LEAs not to wait until the end of the program so they can realize energy savings as soon as possible. (Source)

Energy Audit Questions

4. Should I hurry to submit my paperwork for the CCC or Bright Schools audits?
The CCC and Bright Schools Audits will be scheduled on a first-come, first-served basis. It is in every LEA's best interest to submit an application for one or both (where appropriate) in order to get in the queue for scheduling. For further information please contact Katie Koscielak at (707)260-1700.

5. The CCC already came and did an audit- where is my data and why haven't I heard anything?
To check on the status of your Energy Opportunity Survey, simply click on the "Survey Status Lookup" on the CCC website. You may also contact the CCC by calling (530)645-9974.  There are a number of steps that must be completed to generate an energy survey report after the energy crew has collected data at a school site.  CCC Energy Corps staff can explain where your report is in the workflow.

Given the current backlog for no-cost Energy Opportunity Survey reports, LEAs might consider making arrangements with a third-party energy-efficiency firm to analyze the data collected by the CCC and generate a completed survey report within a shorter period of time. For LEAs choosing this option, the CCC will make available the complete data set. (Source)

Project Planning Questions

6. How much autonomy will my School Board have in choosing upgrade projects?  Building contractors?
LEAs will retain financial decision-making power.  RCEA will only advise and lend expertise for informed decisions.  For further information please contact Katie Koscielak at (707)269-1700.

7. Can Proposition 39 funds be used for solar photovoltaic projects?
Solar photovoltaic projects can be funded by Proposition 39 as long as the project (energy efficiency measures and/or clean energy installation at a school or site) meets the Savings to Investment Ratio (SIR) requirement of greater than 1.05. (Source)

For more Frequently Asked Questions about Fundings, Eligibility, Charter Schools, Leased Properties, Expenditure Plans and more, please visit the California Energy Commission's FAQ webpage.

Contact Us

Proposition 39 Team at Redwood Coast Energy Authority

Lou Jacobson, Program Manager
(707)269-1700, Ext. 304

Allison Campbell, Energy Specialist
(707)269-1700, Ext. 346

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