Legislation reauthorizing hundreds of millions of dollars a year of ratepayer surcharges for energy efficiency and renewable research and development failed to garner the requisite two-thirds vote before the close of session at midnight on Sept. 9. In spite of the legislative loss, program funding for alternative energy technologies created during the deregulation era could be revived administratively or via emergency session legislation. Part of Gov. Jerry Brown\u2019s jobs package announced in late August included legislation to extend the public purpose program to 2020 to spur clean energy and job development. He\u2019s expected to soon call an emergency session focused on job creation. The failed bills could be rolled into that effort. \u201cWe are very disappointed but hopeful, said Robin Smutny-Jones, California Energy Commission assistant executive director, after the measure to continue the $125 million in annual funding to the agency for alternative energy projects went down in defeat. With the failure of the legislation, the California Public Utilities Commission loses $225 million a year for energy efficiency programs. Whether the dent in the budget for the two agencies could cause layoffs is unknown at this time. \u201cWe are digging into the ultimate impacts,\u201d said Smutny-Jones. Earlier this week, Brown said the CPUC has authority to fund the program by adding its cost to utility rates. Bills by Senator Alex Padilla (D-San Fernando) and Assemblymember Steven Bradford (D-Gardena) would have reauthorized the public goods program, which expires at the end of this year. The fate of the two bills, SB 870 and AB 724, was tied together. AB 724 only mustered a 19-17 vote on the Senate floor, with Senator Rod Wright (D- Los Angeles) joining opposing Republicans. AB 870 faired far better, winning a 50-18 vote, but it was double joined with Bradford\u2019s legislation so it also failed. The bills became the legislative vehicle for Brown\u2019s effort to renew the public goods charge, which is a small surcharge on monthly power usage, raising the average bill about 1.5 percent. This year the charge is expected to bring in $400 million. The money goes to three separate programs designed to advance energy technology through research, fund renewable power generation system deployment, and pay for building energy efficiency retrofits. Southern California Edison and some other business interests opposed extending the program, insisting it would raise rates and duplicate other ratepayer funding sources. With a legislated sunset date of January 1, 2012, the program was the subject of earlier bills to extend, revamp, or eliminate continued support (Current, Aug. 26, 2011).