June 13, 2019
ABA Deadline Reminder:
American Bar Association Extends Session Idea Deadline
The American Bar seeks session ideas for the Energy Bar Association’s 2019 Mid-Year Energy Forum, scheduled for October 15-16, 2019 in Washington DC. Your expertise and experience in energy law uniquely positions you to provide creative new session ideas for the Forum. Input from the semi-annual
Submission deadline: June 16th!
Please submit the learning objectives, details and the goal of your session idea through their online survey: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/2019EnergyIdeas
2GW of Off-Shore Wind by 2030 Coming To Connecticut?
On June 4, 2019 Connecticut HB-7156 was unanimously approved by the Senate. Once signed by the Governor, PURA’s Department of Energy & Environmental Protection has 14 days to develop a plan to solicit bids from wind developers. The new law would require 2GW by 2030.
District of Columbia
SEPA Submits Plan
On May 31sth SEPA submitted its Modernizing The Energy Delivery System for Increased Sustainability (“MEDIS”) Stakeholder Working Groups Report to the District of Columbia’s Public Service Commission. The plan details 32 recommendation for the DCPSC’s consideration to advance grid modernization. It is an excellent read. The full report may be viewed here (pdf).
Of note, the report recommends, "The DCPSC should create a new stand-alone website or enhance their existing website to house up-to-date competitive energy supplier offers as well as energy education material that would aid customers in evaluating offers. The new site should be easily identifiable and accessible from the DCPSC home page. A marketing campaign should accompany the availability of this new website to increase customer awareness of the site"
FCC Okays Blocked Robo Calls
On June 6, 2019 Action by the Commission June 6, 2019 by Declaratory Ruling and Third Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (FCC 19-51), the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) affirms that telecom companies may aggressively block illegal robocalls to consumers.
Specifically, the Commission approved a Declaratory Ruling to affirm that telecom providers may, as the default, block unwanted calls based on reasonable call analytics, as long as their customers are informed and have the opportunity to opt out of the blocking. The ruling also clarifies that providers may offer their customers the choice to opt-in to tools that block calls from any number that does not appear on a customer’s contact list or other “white lists.”
Solar Project Coming To Chicago Housing Authority
As reported in the Business Wire on June 6th, the Chicago Housing Authority (CHA) is partnering with Chicago-based VLV Development – a veteran-owned, diversity-certified business – to finance, design and maintain the solar installation project at Dearborn Homes, the first Chicago public housing community built after World War II. The solar installation is expected to have a generation capacity of 750 kilowatts and will help power the property’s 17 buildings, including 660 residential units.
The Future Energy Jobs Act (FEJA) that went into effect in 2017 offers incentives for the project that reduce upfront costs associated with solar panel installation.
Illinois Commissions Confirmed
Congratulations to Chairman Carrie K. Zalewski and Commissioner Maria S. Bocanegra for being confirmed by the Illinois State Senate as the newest members of the Illinois Commerce Commission (ICC).
ComEd’s Net Metering 110% Annual Usage Rule Challenged
In Docket 19-0145 Plaintiff, Erik Nichols, argues that his net metering application should have been approved by ComEd. At issue, is the Plaintiff alleges that under the Commission net metering rules that he qualifies as an eligible customer since the system "is intended primarily to offset the customer's own electrical requirements". ComEd denied the application citing a rule that their estimate of the Applicant’s PV system's yearly output potential could not exceed 110% of the sum my property's prior 12 months of actual electricity usage.
The Plaintiff ask the Commission to find Com Ed's 110% rule is arbitrary, and not in keeping with the intent of 220 ILCS 5/16-107.5, and therefore it is unjust and unreasonable. ComEd is enforcing this 110% rule while it is not approved by or on file with the Commission or published in its own tariff sheets in accordance with the Public Utilities Act. The Plaintiff asks the Commission to approve its net metering application. A July 16, 2019 status hearing is scheduled.
Three Phase Staff Investigation Announced
In Docket D.P.U. 19-07 Staff of the Massachusetts DPU previews upcoming June 6 technical session. Staff has proposed a three (3) staged approach to address the issues in the pending retail electric market investigation as follows:
Phase I: To be discussed at Jun 6th technical conference
- Notification of automatic renewals
- Customer complaint data
- Standards of conduct
- Supplier enrollment reports
- Energy Switch website (electric only)
Phase II: To be addressed at later scheduled time
- "Do not switch" mechanism
- Third Party Verification (TPV)
- Enrollments - Timing
- Enrollments - Account #
- Customer information
- General education
Governor Vetoes Bill to Increase Net Metering Cap
On June 3rd, the New Jersey Governor vetoed HB 365 that would have increased the state’s net metering cap from 1 MW to 5 MW. The bill would have allowed larger uses to take advantage of renewable energy opportunities. The bill now returns to the legislature that would require a two-thirds majority to override the veto. HB 365.
SB547 Competitive Supply Cap Awaits Governor’s Signature
Nevada legislature have passed SB547 that among many other things, requires the Commission to consider annual caps on the total amount of energy and capacity that competitive supply customers may be authorized to purchase from competitive suppliers via transactions approved by the Commission on or after May 16, 2019. - SB547-Enrolled
Draft New Jersey Energy Plan Released
The State of New Jersey releases its Draft 2019 New Jersey Energy Master Plan, Policy vision to 2050 is released. Among other things, the report discusses a goal of establishing a 50% RPS by 2030 and discusses challenges in achieving 100% clean energy by 2050. - Draft 2019 Energy Plan (pdf)
Supplier Agrees to Fine & On-going D2D Compliance Plan
In a PUCO stipulation in Case 19-1278-GE-UNC Great American Power agree to $35,000 fine and agreed to making several corrective marketing practices. Among other things the company has agreed to review its third-party verification (TPV) scripts as required by 4901:1-21-06 and 4901:1-29-06 Customer Consent & Enrollment Rules and has agreed to follow an on-going door-to-door compliance plan of its vendors and agents.
Liberty Power Agrees To PaPUC $82,000 Civil Penalty Settlement
In Docket M-2019-2568471, Liberty Power agrees to $82,000 civil penalty that includes the following:
- $56,000 for the 56 customer accounts that were physically switched to and received electric generation supply from Liberty Power;
- $5,800 for 29 customer accounts where the process of switching to Liberty Power had been initiated but not completed;
- $1,000 for the non-quantifiable and unknown number of customers who may have been potentially affected by the unauthorized switching conducted by Liberty Power’s agent; and
- $20,000 for Liberty Power’s inclusion of an 'Energy Only Rate' on Liberty Power’s disclosure statements and marketing materials.
Liberty Power has also agreed to provide to each of the customers, who had one or more of the fifty-six (56) accounts physically switched to Liberty Power, a refund for the entire electric generation supply portion on the customers’ bills for the first two (2) billing periods that the customers were switched to Liberty Power, pursuant to 52 Pa. Code § 57.177(b).
REP Stipulates to Penalty For Alleged Customer Deposit Violations
In Docket 49576 Quest Distributors, LLC agrees to pay $20,000 under a settlement TPUC Staff regarding alleged customer deposit violations found in Section 25.107(f)(2)(B).
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