How Do You Become an Intervenor in a Siting Case?

Related Pages and Documents


The Process

To become an intervenor, complete a written application called a "Petition to Intervene." This petition form can be found on the Energy Commission website (http://www.energy.ca.gov/public_adviser/). The original, signed Petition to Intervene must be filed with either the Docket Unit of the Energy Commission or with the presiding member of the committee assigned to a specific proceeding or siting case. Filing with the dockets unit assures a more timely notice of the petition filing to all parties. The Petition to Intervene must be accompanied by a copy of the Proof of Service (POS), which is a list of all the other parties to the proceeding and can be found on the proceeding's web page, and a Declaration of Service, which is a statement declaring the method of service and filing of the packet to those on the accompanying POS list (particularly the applicant).

Sometimes electronic filing is appropriate. This is particularly true of parties on the POS who have indicated a desire to receive electronic filings, rather than paper copies. Guidance on electronic filings (Title 20 section 1209.5) follows.

A Petition to Intervene must be served on the applicant and preferably on all parties identified on the POS. Each case has its own POS. Updated POS lists are maintained on each individual case's website and can be accessed on the Energy Commission homepage or at http://www.energy.ca.gov/sitingcases. For questions on service of process, contact the Public Adviser's Office.

In order to be complete, every document submitted to a case record by a party (including the Petition to Intervene), must include the most recent POS list for the proceeding, as well as the Declaration of Service, providing a sworn statement under penalty of perjury by the filing party that the papers filed were served to each party on the POS.

The Timing

It is important to intervene early in a proceeding, otherwise there is the possibility of missing the time frame in which to request information from staff, the applicant and other parties (refer to Cal. Code of Regs., titl. 20 § 1716 (e)). In addition, there is the potential in every case for the Committee to the specific proceeding to make a good cause determination to shorten or lengthen the time required for compliance with regulations (Cal. Code of Regs., titl. 20 § 1203(f) and 1207(c)). Refer to the project schedule for guidance, and if questions remain, do not hesitate to contact the Public Adviser's Office for guidance on timely filings.

In a power plant siting case, the Petition to Intervene must be submitted to the Commission between the date a project is found data adequate and no later than the Prehearing Conference or thirty days prior to the project's first formal hearing of evidence before the Committee. (Cal. Code of Regs., tit. 20 § 1207(b).) It is not necessary that you be an attorney or have one representing you in order to intervene.

The Petition to Intervene

The Petition to Intervene consists of a packet that must be submitted to the Energy Commission and the applicant, while it is requested that it is also sent to all others on the Proof of Service (POS) list.

At a minimum this packet must include three documents:

  1. Petition to Intervene (http://www.energy.ca.gov/public_adviser/intervening_faq.html)
  2. Proof of Service (http://www.energy.ca.gov/sitingcases), (most recent version from the proceeding's website)
  3. Declaration of Service (http://www.energy.ca.gov/public_adviser/intervening_faq.html)

The Response

Once received, the Committee of two Commissioners will determine if the petition is accepted and notify the requestor within 30-days.

Guidance on Electronic Filing

Sometimes electronic filing is appropriate. This is particularly true of parties on the POS who have indicated a desire to receive electronic filings, rather than paper copies. In those cases, the guidance below from Title 20 § 1209 will be useful.

  1. Electronic documents may be submitted in any of the following media in the number of copies specified:
    1. Two CD-ROMs (read only);
    2. Two magnetic diskettes;
    3. One internet e-mail; or
    4. Any other media and number of copies authorized by the Executive Director.
  2. The format version used must be noted on the media. Charts, graphs, drawings, maps, and photographs should be incorporated within the document, but may be included in an appendix. Maps and photographs may be submitted as paper copies in the number specified by the executive director.
  3. Electronic documents shall be provided in the Portable Document Format (PDF), or its equivalent, as determined by the executive director.
    1. The executive director may waive the format requirement if it is shown to constitute an undue burden on the submitter of a document. A written request for a waiver may be submitted to the executive director at any time prior to the filing of a document. The request shall include a description of each such document and a discussion of the reasons why the format specified in (c) above is an undue burden. The requesting party may not file the electronic document while such a request is pending. If a request is granted, the executive director shall specify the format allowed. The executive director shall act on all such requests within 15 days.
  4. Documents shall be delivered to the Dockets Unit in one of the following ways:
    1. by personal delivery to the Dockets Unit;
    2. by electronic transfer (e-mail) of smaller documents (5MB maximum file size) to: docket@energy.state.ca.us;
    3. by first class mail, or other equivalent delivery service, with postage prepaid; or
    4. in any other delivery method approved by the Executive Director.
  5. Data the submitter considers confidential must be filed as a separate document with an application for confidential designation pursuant to Section 2505.
NOTE: Authority cited: Sections 25216.5(a) and 25218(e), Public Resources Code.
Reference: Section 25223, Public Resources Code.