The Climate Catalyst Revolving Loan Fund is designed to “Jumpstart critical climate solutions through flexible, low-cost credit and credit support.”
California has numerous formal acts in statute. Government Code Title 6.7, Division 1, Chapter 2, Article 6.7 provides the Climate Catalyst Revolving Loan Fund Act of 2020, which is contained in Section 63048.91 to 63048.100. Article 6.7 was added in 2020 by Chapter 10. Section 63048.91 names the act.
In addition, this article does not apply to any other activities, powers, and duties of the California Infrastructure and Economic Development Bank (I Bank) under this division. The bank is required to administer the Climate Catalyst Revolving Loan Fund to provide financial assistance for climate catalyst projects, which is provided at low-interest rates and at low-cost as determined by the bank, to support the projects directly and to attract additional third-party capital.
Section 63048.92 provides definitions for the following terms: “bank”; “climate catalyst project”; “climate catalyst revolving loan fund”; “climate catalyst revolving loan fund program”; “climate catalyst financing plan”; “consulting agencies”; “disadvantaged”; “sponsor”; and, “participating party.”
Section 63048.93 authorizes the bank to provide financial assistance under the Climate Catalyst Revolving Loan Fund Program to any eligible sponsor or participating party either directly or to a lending or financial institution, in connection with the financing or refinancing of a climate catalyst project, in accordance with an agreement or agreements, between the I Bank and the sponsor or participating party, including, but not limited to, tribes, either as a sole lender or in participation or syndication with other lenders.
Beginning in the 2021–2022 fiscal year, the I Bank is required to meet and confer with the consulting agencies concerning the specific categories of climate catalyst project corresponding to each agency. Thereafter, the I Bank board must adopt, by majority vote of the bank board, a climate catalyst financing plan.
A climate catalyst financing plan remains in effect until superseded by a revised climate catalyst financing plan. The consulting agencies and corresponding areas of climate catalyst projects they will provide consultation on is specified. This includes:
- The Natural Resources Agency for climate catalyst projects that relate to sustainable vegetation management, forestry practices, and timber harvesting products.
- The Department of Food and Agriculture for climate catalyst projects that relate to agricultural improvements that enhance the climate or lessen impacts to the climate resulting from in-force agricultural practices.
The I Bank may engage in outreach activities to inform disadvantaged participating parties and disadvantaged sponsors of the categories of financial assistance potentially available within the climate catalyst revolving loan fund program. The outreach efforts may include, but are not limited to, all of the specified activities.
Section 63048.94 provides that commencing October 1, 2022, and no later than October 1 of each year, the bank is required to prepare and submit to the Governor, the Speaker of the Assembly, the President pro Tempore of the Senate, and the Legislative Analyst’s Office a report containing Climate Catalyst Revolving Loan Fund Program activity for the preceding fiscal year ending June 30, along with required information as specified.
Section 63048.95 created the State Treasury the Climate Catalyst Revolving Loan Fund for the purpose of implementing the objectives and provisions of this article. The Climate Catalyst Revolving Loan Fund must be separate from any other fund or account created under this division.
Moneys in the Climate Catalyst Revolving Loan Fund are continuously appropriated, without regard to fiscal year, for the support of the bank and be available for expenditure for the purposes as stated in this article.
Section 63048.96 authorizes the bank to pledge any or all of the moneys in the Climate Catalyst Revolving Loan Fund as security for payment of the principal of, and interest on, any particular issuance of bonds issued for the purposes of this article. The bank may use any or all of the moneys in the Climate Catalyst Revolving Loan Fund to retain or purchase for retention or sale, subordinated bonds issued by the bank, by a special purpose trust, or by a sponsor, all in connection with the purposes of this article.
Section 63048.97 authorizes the bank to administer and distribute among the accounts and subaccounts created under this article, at its discretion, the proceeds from any general obligation bonds issued in accordance with the State General Obligation Bond Law. The assets of the Climate Catalyst Revolving Loan Fund must be available for the payment of the salaries and other expenses incurred by the bank in connection with the administration of this article.
Section 63048.98 provides that all costs, liabilities, obligations, and expenses incurred in carrying out the purposes of this article are payable solely from funds provided for the purposes of this article, and no liability, cost, expense, or obligation are to be imposed upon the state or the bank beyond the extent to which money was provided solely for the purposes of the bank’s activities authorized under this article.
Section 63048.99 provides that moneys in the Climate Catalyst Revolving Loan Fund received from the proceeds of bonds issued pursuant to this division may not be transferred to any other fund except as necessary to pay the expenses of operating the Climate Catalyst Revolving Loan Fund Program.
Section 63048.100 provides that expenditures of the Climate Catalyst Revolving Loan Fund are not subject to the supervision or approval of any other officer or division of state government, with the exception of the Legislature. However, the bank’s budget for the activities authorized in this article must be prepared and reviewed not later than November 1 of each year.