Around Town | March 24, 2023 | Palo Alto Weekly | Palo Alto Online |

Palo Alto Weekly

News - March 24, 2023

Around Town

BRINGING IN THE ENERGY ... State Sen. Josh Becker announced Stanford University doctoral student Jill Grey Ferguson as the winner of his inaugural "Ought to Be a Law" contest, the senator's office announced this week. What was Ferguson's idea for a bill? To create a one-stop online energy portal for Californians to apply for incentives through the California Energy Commission (CEC). Her idea will be carried into Senate Bill 755, titled "California's Layered Energy Application for Residents." The portal would require the CEC to streamline the application process for energy incentives, increasing access for low-income residents in particular. "I'm so thrilled to announce Jill's idea as the winner of our Ought to Be a Law competition," Becker, D-San Mateo, said in a March 20 press release. "Applying for energy incentives is simply too challenging right now and this one-stop application will make the process substantially easier." Ferguson is a doctoral student in environment and resources at the Emmett Interdisciplinary Program in the Stanford Doerr School of Sustainability, which debuted during the fall of 2022. She is also a Shultz energy fellow at the California Public Utilities Commission. "The implementation of funding programs have been steeped with inequities," Ferguson said in the press release, "but an online platform aimed at improving the distributional equity of state and federal funding would be a welcome addition to the field."

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