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February 24, 2020

Arizona

Reminder – Competition Workshop Dates Scheduled

Arizona Commission in Docket RE-00000A-18-0405 issue revised Stakeholder Meeting and Workshop in the Matter of Possible Modifications to the Arizona Corporation Commission’s Retail Electric Competition Rules. The new meetings are scheduled for 10:00 a.m. on February 25th and 26th. Agenda can be read here.

In this docket on February 12, 2019 Staff of the Utilities Division issues a supplemental summary of findings regarding retail competition in other jurisdictions. The report is divided into two sections: electric market information and state-specific information. The report notes that “the report is not intended to be read as a single narrative, but to be used as a reference representing a recapitulation of information available.” Second Staff Report Submission is here (pdf).

Dial-in Phone Number: 1-866-705-2554 Passcode to Speak: 241497 1-866-705-2554 Passcode to Listen Only: 2414978

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Connecticut

PURA Issues Notice of Preliminary Findings of RPS Noncompliance

On February 13, 2020 in Docket 18-06-28 PURA in its annual review of suppliers and distribution companies’ compliance with Connecticut’s RPS obligations, the Commission issued a preliminary list of suppliers that were identified as being noncompliant with the states RPS obligations. Any company that wishes to contest any findings or determination must submit: (a) a statement explaining any errors found and/or the requested revisions to be made; (b) a revised Exhibit A of the RPS report; and (c) necessary documentation supporting the requested revisions, such as GIS reports. All submissions must be filed with the Authority no later than Thursday, February 27, 2020, at 4:00 p.m.

The record of this proceeding will close on Wednesday, March 4, 2018. After this date, no evidentiary data, reports or documents of any kind will be accepted for processing. Notice of Preliminary RPS Noncompliance (Word File Download).

Proposed RPS Risk Mitigation Plans Proposed

In Docket No. 19-10-26 parties filed written comments to PURAs proposals to minimize the risk of of unmet RPS obligations due to supplier default

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Illinois

ICC Residential Year End Switching Statistics Posted

According to the ICC’ Plug In Illinois Power of Choice website, approximately 1.67 million residential customers have switched to a Retail Electric Supplier. View Detailed Report (PDF download)

 

Reminder: ARES & AGS Annual Recertification Due Date

The Illinois Commerce Commission’s Alternative Retail Electric Supplier (ARES) and Natural Gas Supplier (AGS) Annual 2019 Recertification report under 83 IL Adm. Code 451 is to be submitted by April 30, 2020. 2020 ARES Annual Report Form (MS Word File Download) and AGS Annual Report Form (MS Word File Download).

 

ICC Posts HEAT ACT FAQ

The ICC posts HEAT Act FAQ. Public Act 101-0590 or the Home Energy Affordability and Transparency Act (HEAT Act) applicable to Alternative Retail Gas Suppliers ("AGS") and Alternative Retail Electricity Suppliers ("ARES") became effective January 1, 2020. Among other things, the HEAT Act adds new bonding requirements for electric and gas suppliers, contract renewal and early termination fee restrictions, shopping restrictions to Assistance Customers – LIHEAP and PIPP, new marketing materials and advertising requirements, including Price to Compare, savings claims and rate information marketing obligations, as well as new training compliance obligations and so much more!

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Maine

Utilities Directed To Provide Historical 10-Year SOS Rate On Customer Bills

In Docket No. 2019-00186, as mandated by recently adopted legislation (L.D. 1003) the Maine PUC issued a final rule requiring the utilities to annually provide customers with a 10-year history of Standard Offer rates as part of the customer bill.

The final rule states, "Electric investor-owned transmission and distribution utilities shall provide to the Commission annually by April 1 information regarding the average rate, including transmission, distribution and standard-offer rate components, of each rate class for the prior 10-year period on a calendar-year basis. Rate information shall be the average revenue per kWh. The Commission shall develop an informational chart for the utilities to include in customer bills pursuant to Section 8(D)(1) above."

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Maryland

MD PSC Retail Energy Posts Supplier Complaint Reports

The Maryland Public Service Commission’s Consumer Affairs Division (CAD) posted its FY2020 Complaint report. FY2020 Complaint Reports (PDF).

CAD receives, investigates and responds to consumer complaints against regulated utility companies and/or gas and electric retail energy suppliers in accordance with the Code of Maryland Regulations 20.32. Supplier Complaints Online Press Release (PDF).

 

Maryland PSC Compliance Enforcement Unit Created

In an effort to strengthen protections for energy consumers, the Maryland Public Service Commission announced it has established a Compliance and Enforcement Unit within its Consumer Affairs Division (CAD). See press release here: MD PSC Compliance Enforcement Unit Press Release (PDF).

In the announcement, it stated that, “[t]he Commission takes its oversight of utilities and retail suppliers very seriously,” said Commission Chairman Jason M. Stanek. “We have made it a priority to ensure that customer rights are protected, and that utility companies and suppliers are in full compliance with the Commission’s regulations and Maryland law.”

 

MD PSC Appeals FERC’s PJM Capacity Market Order

On January 21,2020, the MD PSC released a press release announcing the request for rehearing and clarification of FERC’s recent order. In its request, the Commission argues that FERC’s recent decision exceed FERC’s authority under federal law and that this decision could frustrate state policies related to Maryland’s renewable energy goals. MD PSC Press Release (PDF).

 

Supplier Application Denied Due To High Complaint Statistics

As reported on February 13th of February by Energy Choice Matters, on February 12, 2020 the Maryland PSC denied the application of Mega Energy of Maryland, LLC for an electricity supplier license. The Commission decision was based on Staff concerns regarding the number of complaints received against the company's affiliates in other states. (IR-4314) Letter Order:

See Energy Choice Matter’s story here: http://www.energychoicematters.com/stories/20200213zz.html.

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New Jersey

Telemarketing Class Actions Filed Against Suppliers

On February 11th in 2:2020-cv-01403 Muller v. Public Service Enterprise Group Inc. filed a proposed class action in New Jersey federal court alleging that the energy supplier made prerecorded telemarketing calls to thousands of consumers' cellphones without their prior consent, in violation of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act.

In addition, on February 13, 2020 in 2:2020-cv-01500 in Third circuit US District Court for the District of New Jersey plaintiff Danelle filed a civil action against Genie Retail Energy, Inc.

 

Date Set For New Jersey’s Clean Energy Future Conference

On February 6, 2020 the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (NJBPU) announced the return of the New Jersey Clean Energy Conference: Charting the Path to 2050. to be held at Harrah’s Resort in Atlantic City from April 6 to 7. NJ Clean Energy Conference Website.

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New York

NY PSC Issues Guidance Document For Review Of ESCO Eligibility

On February 10, 2020 the NY PSC issued a guidance document regarding ESCO eligibility review. The Commission reminds ESCOs that, “Nothing in this guidance document should be viewed as either supplementing or altering the terms of either the December 12, 2019 Order Adopting Changes to the Retail Access Energy Market and Establishing Further Process or the Uniform Business Practices (UBP). Rather this guidance document is being provided as a resource to ESCOs.” (Cases 15-M-0127,12-M-0476, and 98-M-1243). See February 12 Correspondence link here.

This document details the procedure for Staff Review of ESCO eligibility, which shall be effective after the effective date of the UBP, May 11, 2020. See Guidance document for the periodic review of ESCO eligibility.

 

Average Utilities 12-Month Average Supply Rates Posted

As directed by the Commission in its reset order, the New York utilities posted their respective 12-month trailing average utility supply rates. Under the reset order, can only offer fixed rate commodity products that are priced no more than five percent greater than the trailing 12-month average utility supply rate.

Per the commission’s order, "Electric and gas distribution utilities that have tariffed provisions providing for retail access shall publish on their websites 12-month trailing average utility supply rates within 15 days of March 31, June 30, September 30, and December 31 each year, starting with a filing within 15 days of December 31, 2019, for each mass-market service class and for each mass-market customer grouping that receives different supply rates based on the applicable tariff. The published averages shall include all charges and credits that apply to full-service customer bills but would not apply to ESCO customer bills for the applicable service class and customer grouping." See Energy Choice Matter’s January 29, 2020 story.

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Ohio

Brokers & Supplies Warned of Noncompliance

On January 29, 2020 in Case No(s). 19-0001-AU-RPT in the Ohio Public Utility Commission issued a Finding & Order that directs all regulated entities who have failed to remit their fiscal assessment based on the 2018 annual report to do so by February 28, 2020, and, pursuant to R.C. 4905.54, assesses a civil forfeiture of $1,000 against every company listed in the attachment to this Second Finding and Order. View Document (PDF).

 

Sign Up For Utility Changes In Electric or Gas Prices

The Ohio Commission informs customers to sign up to receive instant email or text notification when the customer’s utility changes their generation rates or natural gas prices.

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Pennsylvania

Reminder - PA PUC Upcoming Report Filing Deadlines

On January 27, 2020 the Office of Competitive Market Oversight (OCMO) issued a CHARGE Summary reminding licensed entities of upcoming reporting and bond reduction process. This documents highlights filing requirements as well as three most common reasons a bond is rejected.

The summary also reminds suppliers that annual sales reports are due in April and provides forms and filing instructions. The Bureau of Technical Utility Services announces that it will be revising the EGS and NGS application forms currently posted on the Commission’s website and is seeking input on the forms and are instructed to contact Daren by the end of February 2020 at dgill@pa.gov or 717-783-5244.

See: OCMO CHARGE SUMMARY (PDF).

 

Reminder - Informal Comments Due to OCMO by February 21, 2020

The PAPUC’s Office of Competitive Market Oversight (OCMO) requested informal comments on a number of potential changes to the regulations. Informal comments should be emailed to the Office of Competitive Market Oversight at: RA-OCMO@pa.gov. As these are informal comments, they should NOT be addressed to or submitted to the Commission’s Secretary (there is not yet a docket established for this proceeding as it is still in the preliminary, informal stage).

 

Staff Provides EGS Customer Choice Rulemaking Status Update

Staff says to look for a final rulemaking order at an upcoming Commission public meeting in Docket L-2017-2628991 - Rulemaking Regarding Electricity Generation Customer Choice, 52 Pa. Code Chapter 54. Docket=L-2017-2628991.

Staff notes that as they approach implementation of the revised rules, they will likely convene an in-person meeting for all stakeholders here in Harrisburg to review the new rules, and any other current matters.

 

Supplier Licenses Canceled For Failure To Provide Financial Security

On February 14, 2020 the PA PUC entered a Final Order in M-2019-3006865 (MS Word Document download).
providing a list of EGS licensees that failed to provide required approved financial security. Table 1 identifies EGS licensees that eventually provided required approved financial security. Table 2 identifies the EGS licensees that failed to provide the required approved financial security and thereby their licensees were cancelled.

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