A monthly update regarding the important work of RCRC's affiliated entities, providing innovative services for the benefit of rural communities.


ESJPA Approves Participating Entity Program

At the most recent convening of the Rural Counties Environmental Services Joint Powers Authority (ESJPA), the Board of Directors unanimously approved a new program to allow public solid waste jurisdictions that are not otherwise eligible to join ESJPA through an RCRC member county to join as participating entities. The new program, which will launch in late 2024/early 2025, will offer all of ESJPA’s services including technical support, advocacy advice, grant assistanceand interface with state and federal agencies and departments to participating entity members.  

Approval of the ESJPA Participating Entity Program is part of the 2023-25 ESJPA Business Plan adopted by the Board in 2022, which included plans to explore the possibility of establishing such a program. ESJPA is looking forward to expanding its reach beyond RCRC throughout the entire state of California.


CPUC Awards First Grants from Last Mile FFA Program

On June 7, the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) announced the first awardees for its $2 billion Last Mile Federal Funding Account (FFA) Grant Program. This program aims to bring internet access to underserved communities across the state. This initial announcement is part of a rolling process that will continue throughout the summer and fall.  

A total of $88.6 million across 11 projects was recommended for Commission review and action in the first round, including projects in GSCA-member counties Imperial, Lassen, Plumas, and Sierra. GSCA’s Imperial County Broadband Network project is among those recommended in this round. If approved by the Commission at the July 11, 2024, CPUC meeting, $13.8 million in FFA funds would be dedicated to deployment of an open access, last mile, fiber network in Imperial County that would provide service to nearly 1,900 unserved locations.  

More awards are expected to be announced in the coming months. 

See the GSCA’s full press release here