Since the adoption of GO 1631 in 1995, the Commission has used its procedures almost exclusively to procure environmental consultant services so that it can comply with CEQA. Commission staff discovered in working with the Department of General Services (DGS), the agency that must review and ratify the CPUC's contracts, that GO 163 should be revised in several ways to expedite and clarify the process for obtaining consultants. The Commission initiated a rulemaking on June 14, and circulated the rulemaking and proposed revisions for comment to the service list from the 1995 rulemaking, current contractors, and utilities with projects subject to the Commission's review under CEQA.

The rulemaking's preliminary scoping memo classified this proceeding as quasi-legislative and stated that we would consider written comments but would not hold hearings. No one has contested the conclusions of the preliminary scoping memo. We issue an official service list, which is attached to this decision.

Comments were submitted by two parties and are addressed below. In reviewing the comments we make a minor technical change to the proposed GO 163A, which does not affect the substance of the proposed revisions. We also add an additional revision that was described in the rulemaking, but which was inadvertently omitted from the proposed version of General Order 163A appended to the rulemaking.

1 In 1995 we adopted GO 163 in order to implement regulations mandated by Government Code Sections 4525-4529.5, which specify the procedures public entities must use for the procurement of consultant services for landscape architectural, professional engineering, environmental, land surveying, and construction project management services.

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