Legislation to require that California Air Resources Board members be elected instead of appointed to their posts went down in defeat in an Assembly Natural Resources Committee March 22 hearing. \u201cIt is simply about control of government and accountability,\u201d Assemblymember Kevin Jeffries (R-Lake Elsinore), author of AB 1672, explained. He said the Air Board has the powers of the three branches of government combined. \u201cIt\u2019s an effort to chip away at AB 32,\u201d countered Assemblymember Jared Huffman (D-San Rafael). AB 32 requires the state to cut its greenhouse gas emissions 25 percent by 2020. The bill was opposed by several clean air groups. No witnesses testified in support of AB 1672. In other business, the committee passed a resolution to clarify when qualifying geothermal projects can tap into federal funds. Assembly Joint Resolution 30 specifies that American Recovery and Reinvestment Act money aimed at spurring geothermal power development can be accessed at the start of the construction of a geothermal well to produce power. Federal funding--be it a tax credit or grant--would not kick in at the commencement of exploratory drilling, however. AJR 30 by Assemblymember Mary Salas (D-Chula Vista) passed with no discussion. Three may be the magic number for legislation seeking to raise the renewable mandate to 33 percent. SB 722 by Senator Joe Simitian (D-Palo Alto) awaits the Senate Rules Committee to schedule a hearing in a policy committee, which is expected to be the Senate Energy, Communication, & Utilities Committee. This is Simitian\u2019s third try at legislatively mandating a one third alternative power portfolio for state utilities. There is no anticipated date for a hearing, said a Simitian staffer.