Business

Wednesday, Dec 04 2013 05:29 PM

Worth noting in business: 'Fracking' meeting coming to Bakersfield

By THE BAKERSFIELD CALIFORNIAN

State Department of Conservation officials will be in Bakersfield next week gathering public input about what should be included in an environmental review of proposed rules for the oilfield technique known as hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking."

The scoping meeting, one of five statewide, is to take place from 4 to 8 p.m. Dec. 12 at the Beale Memorial Library, 701 Truxtun Ave.

The environmental review must be certified by July 1, 2015. The review's notice of preparation can be viewed online at conservation.ca.gov/index/pages/index.aspx.

A Canadian company has agreed to pay $2.2 million for the rights to develop a 20-megawatt solar plant near Bakersfield.

Algonquin Power & Utilities Corp., an Oakville, Ontario company with $3.2 billion in North American utilities investments, announced on Thanksgiving that one of its subsidiaries, Algonquin Power Co., entered into the agreement with Valos Solar Ventures LLC.

The plant, called Bakersfield Solar, is expected to cost $58.5 million to build, including purchase of the underlying real estate. It would sell its electricity to Pacific Gas and Electric Co. under a 20-year power purchase contract.

Central Valley water issues, a new outlet shopping center and increases in California's minimum wage are on the agenda for next week's annual Greater Bakersfield Chamber of Commerce business update, titled Bakersfield: The Next 5 Years.

The event will feature presentations by representatives of Paramount Farming Co., Tejon Ranch Co. and Dowling Aaron Inc.

The event is set for 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Tuesday at the Bakersfield Marriott at the Convention Center. Registation information is available online at bakersfieldchamber.org.

Wells Fargo recently handed out more than $90,000 in grants to local organizations, including $25,000 to fund the Dolores Huerta Foundation's 10-week course for 50 Spanish-speaking entrepreneurs in Bakersfield and the Arvin-Lamont area.

The San Francisco-based bank presented the Bakersfield College Foundation with $25,000 to cover vocational training for veterans interested in careers in energy.

Forty-two Kern County schools and nonprofits ranging from Bakersfield High School to the Kern County Library received $1,000 grants.

JCPenney has donated $12,500 to support the Boys & Girls Clubs of Kern County's More Members More Often initiative.

The initiative's goals are to attract more young people to the club, persuade existing members to become more involved and retain youths for longer periods.

The Plano, Texas-based retail chain gave the money as part of its jcp cares program.

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