Refresh – Liability Insurance and Miscellany

Refreshing

For the past month, I have continued refreshing R|CAT. Having my business and administrative files organized has been very helpful. Among my legacy files, it was a good day when I came across this gem (1998 liability insurance history) during my form-filling-out endeavors.

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From 1998 insurance application process.

I also have been involved in several business development discussions. As expected (and as it should be), obtaining liability insurance is one of the main steps to securing contracts either directly with clients or as a subcontractor. I am looking forward to paying my insurance premium.

Miscellany

Statement of Qualifications (SOQs). Heading into the home stretch for submitting my application for liability insurance, I am updating my SOQs to include my U.S. EPA, Region 9 project experience. SOQs are one of several required attachments for the application. As I mentioned in an earlier post –

My EPA experience greatly informs my consulting capabilities. I am reliving my EPA performance appraisal self-assessments and appraisal feedback – that’s 2008-2014 work. I am still chipping away at summaries of my EPA project work. I am glad I was quite detailed in my self-assessments and diligent about performance appraisal feedback.

– and I have taken a little longer than I expected. While compiling summaries, I took the opportunity to call colleagues, catch up on their personal and professional pursuits, and reminisce about past projects. I consider the time spent priceless.

Going digital. When I started R|CAT in the mid-1990s, my qualifications and promotional material were on paper. I have come across quite a bit of on-paper qualifications in my legacy files. Needless to say, I am glad to have the benefit of the digital world. And I have a friend who will help starting me off with the nuts and bolts of a web-based presence.

Bookkeeping and accounting. My end-of-the-year activities will include identifying 2014 personal income and expenses attributable to R|CAT activities. Thank you very much to my bookkeeper and accountant, with whom I have great faith in them. (I do not have faith in bookkeeping and accounting.)

What tips, if any, do you have for re-starting a consultancy?

Refresh – Nostalgia in the Present

“Did you get your forms to sign and did you mail off?”
– (everyone)

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Established in San Diego, our cover page (to a large 3-ring binder) for what we called “The Bibble” – important documents and our recordkeeping for corporate-related information and activities.

REFRESH. I use this word – refresh – to describe my re-establishing of my consulting practice – the formal consulting services of “air quality consulting for power plants” work that I started in 1994.

FORMS.

OFF-HOLD. As mentioned, my traditional R|CAT consulting was set-aside while I was serving the U.S. EPA, Region 9 from 2007-2014. Since leaving EPA in April 2014 and deciding in to re-establish R|CAT in the fall of 2014, I continue to chip away at the administrative paperwork, re-establishing certifications and insurance, and digitizing my work. I have had a few projects this year. And I am realizing it is not like pressing a “refresh” button.

MORE FORMS.

WHAT I AM LEARNING. There are a finite amount of forms to complete. And because R|CAT has had relatively zero income (and has maintained active status) over the years, here are a few things that have caught my attention –

  • Past certifications – Referencing expired certifications 7+ years old is of no value.
  • Past insurance – Having nicely filed this information is of great value.
  • Liability insurance Times have changed. The cost (premium) is higher.
  • Attachments – The required attachments for applying for liability insurance cross-over into many other administrative business applications.
  • Statement of Qualifications (SOQs) – SOQs are required not only for several business-related forms but also for proposals and introductions (as well as re-introductions).
    • My EPA experience greatly informs my consulting capabilities. I am reliving my EPA performance appraisal self-assessments and appraisal feedback – that’s 2008-2014 work. I am still chipping away at summaries of my EPA project work. I am glad I was quite detailed in my self-assessments and diligent about performance appraisal feedback.
  • My “Bibble” – This has been a wonderful resource for an all-in-one binder of information. Thanks to Todd for keeping tabs.
  • NAICS – In addition to my environmental-related consulting, will see what additional category may apply for Behavior Design-related services.
  • Client Service Agreements – Thanks to colleagues who have shared their current Client Service Agreements. I have my older template, and I have been able to create a current agreement.
  • Subcontractor Agreements – Thanks to colleagues who have shared their current Subcontractor Agreements. I have my older template, and I have been able to create a current agreement.
  • Financials – I am glad to have someone who has pulled my financials together – current and when R|CAT was active through 2007. Thanks to Karen who uses Quickbooks better than I use it and who keeps me on-track.
  • Promotional Material – Back in the day, I had paper, collateral promotional material. I had a basic webpage in 2005, however, I had not used it for promotional-related material. It is nice to have social media, electronic resources to reference.
  • Help Line for Select Forms – Calling for voice-to-voice help for completion of some forms has not been a pleasant experience. I will leave it at that. (Deep breaths)
  • Annual payments of “stuff” – I will be requesting reimbursements from R|CAT. It dawned on me, as I recently signed another quarterly business payment, I have made some payments from my personal accounts. OOPS. Easily reconciled. (Time to create a reimbursement form.)

That said, I am glad to be back in business, and I am excited that I am re-organizing my filing system.

BACK TO MORE FORMS.

 

{Vintage 1996} Calif Electric Utility Restructuring

VINTAGE R|CAT, circa 1996
Part of restarting my environmental and energy management consulting practice has involved sifting and sorting through archived files – electronic and paper – reliving project memories, and deciding what to retain and what to recycle. This is part of refreshing R|CAT.


heading_title_v10This post is the start of my sharing scoping comments I submitted to the regulatory agency, the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC), in 1996. I submitted comments optimistically believing I would receive responses to each of my questions. I did not. While in retrospect, I may have been naive, as I review my comments, I am glad to have a record of my 1996 perspectives – many of which are still relevant in today’s on-going environmental and energy discussions, debates, emerging issues, and regulatory and policy framework.

Blue Book.  If you were directly or even indirectly serving the energy sector in California in 1994, then you know this reference. Remember the California Electric Utility Industry Restructuring pursuits? Remember September 1996 and AB 1890?

I do. I do VERY MUCH.

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South Bay Power Plant, Chula Vista, CA – Image from the San Diego Reader

I quit an IOU in 1994. Restructuring pursuits served as my inspiration to quit my utility job and hone in on what I could do as part of the future of restructuring. The CPUC issued the Blue Book in April 1994. I was still working for San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E). I worked in the Environmental Department, as part of the corporate air quality team. On November 15, 1994, I quit my job to figure out “What’s next?” In 1996, AB 1890 legislation passed.

(TRIVIA: What is the relevance of the date November 15?*)

AB 1890. The Electric Utility Industry Restructuring Act (Assembly Bill 1890), became law in 1996. Here is an NREL report over here that includes a summary of California’s restructruring. Prior to passage of AB 1890, the CPUC held several scoping meetings throughout California to receive public comments.

RCAT_CPUC Cvr LtrScoping Comments for AB 1890

I submitted comments. I did not receive responses to them. If responses were published, I was not sent the follow-up information. Nevertheless, I submitted comments. The template format I used for providing comments on select topics included four sections –

  • Current scenario
  • Possible future scenario
  • Questions
  • Alternative

The five select topics on which I commented were –

A – Renewables in the Resource Mix

B – Power generation sources in compliance to contribute to attainment efforts

C – Power supply from transmission line or generation siting and FERC’s Order 888/889

D – Emission Valuation Offsets, Reductions, Allowances, Externalities, Caps

E – Air quality and energy management policies

Subsequent blog posts will include excerpts of the scoping comments I provided, as well as perspectives about the current regulatory and policy landscape.

*ANSWER:
The anniversary of the 1990 Clean Air Act Amendments.

{Year 2000} CO2 Reduction Plan

VINTAGE R|CAT, circa 2000
Part of restarting my environmental and energy management consulting practice has involved sifting and sorting through archived files – electronic and paper – reliving project memories, and deciding what to retain and what to recycle. This is part of refreshing R|CAT.


CO2 Reduction Task Force

chula vistaReducing CO2 is one of the strategies for minimizing climate change impacts and reducing global warming impacts.

VRCAT_CV CO2 Reduction PlanIn 2000, I was a member of the the City of Chula Vista’s CO2 Reduction Task Force, who prepared the City’s original CO2 Reduction Plan in November 2000.  As with most task forces that are formed, we represented a variety of perspectives, expertise, and industries; we volunteered our time.

Curious, I checked Chula Vista’s website to see what additional climate change related activities they are currently engaged.

No surprise. As expected, given Chula Vista’s culture, I see from visiting the City’s page that they continue to have a Climate Change Work Group.

CV CCWG

Good memories. Nice to know that the Task Force efforts contributed as part of the City’s foundation for its climate change efforts.