CPUC Now Accepting Applications for New $30 Million Equity and Access Grant Program
Awards will support projects aimed at engaging tribes and community-based organizations
The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) is now accepting applications for its groundbreaking $30 million Equity and Access Grant Program. This innovative program aims to empower tribes and community-based organizations across California by supporting projects that actively engage them in CPUC processes and promote clean energy programs. The CPUC introduced this program earlier this summer, with funding allocated by the Legislature, drawing strong interest, with more than 430 participants attending a recent workshop dedicated to the program.
In this first round, applicants can apply for two of the three grant categories, which include:
- Public Participation Grant: This grant removes financial and public participation barriers, providing up to $15,000 to support engagement in CPUC activities such as working groups, panels, or focus groups. A total of $3.1 million is available for this initiative. Applications will be accepted until June 30, 2025, or until funds are exhausted.
- Equity, Engagement, and Education Grant: This grant enhances the capacity of Tribal, community-based organizations, and community groups to understand and engage with the CPUC and its decision-making processes. The program offers up to $200,000 for projects focused on educating consumers or conducting outreach within underserved communities regarding CPUC matters. A total of $9.75 million is available for this initiative, with round one applications accepted until Oct. 31, 2023.
The third category, the Clean Energy Access Grant Account, which will award grants up to $500,000 for work that will address access to or education about the CPUC Microgrid Incentive Program (MIP), Self-Generation Incentive Program (SGIP), and the Technology and Equipment for Clean Heating Initiative (TECH), will open for applications starting in late 2023/early 2024.
The Equity and Access Grant Program aligns with the CPUC’s Environmental and Social Justice (ESJ) Action Plan. It creates opportunities for ESJ and Tribal communities to engage in CPUC proceedings, ensuring equitable access to clean energy resources, transportation, and communication services for all Californians.
For program guidelines and application forms, please visit the CPUC’s website.
About the California Public Utilities Commission
The CPUC regulates services and utilities, protects consumers, safeguards the environment, and assures Californians access to safe and reliable utility infrastructure and services. Visit https://www.cpuc.ca.gov for more information.