Bill Text - HB395 (2009)

(2nd New Title) requiring electric utilities to offer renewable energy source options, allowing the public utilities commission to make contingent grants and loans from the greenhouse gas emissions reduction fund, and relative to using the electricity distribution charge to fund conservation and load management.


Revision: June 25, 2009, midnight

HB 395 – VERSION ADOPTED BY BOTH BODIES

24Mar2009… 0873h

06/03/09 1922s

24Jun2009… 2146cofc

2009 SESSION

09-0053

09/10

HOUSE BILL 395

AN ACT requiring electric utilities to offer renewable energy source options, allowing the public utilities commission to make contingent grants and loans from the greenhouse gas emissions reduction fund, and relative to using the electricity distribution charge to fund conservation and load management.

SPONSORS: Rep. S. Harvey, Hills 21; Rep. Borden, Rock 18; Rep. Sad, Ches 2; Sen. Merrill, Dist 21; Sen. Fuller Clark, Dist 24

COMMITTEE: Science, Technology and Energy

AMENDED ANALYSIS

This bill:

I. Requires electric utilities to offer one or more renewable energy source options.

II. Allows the public utilities commission to make agreements for implementation of greenhouse gas emissions reduction programs that are contingent upon future proceeds from budget allowance auctions within a subsequent 12-month period.

III. Establishes limitations on the use of the electricity distribution charge to fund conservation, energy efficiency, and load management programs and incentives.

IV. Repeals certain provisions relative to limitations on the systems benefit charge.

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Explanation: Matter added to current law appears in bold italics.

Matter removed from current law appears [in brackets and struckthrough.]

Matter which is either (a) all new or (b) repealed and reenacted appears in regular type.

24Mar2009… 0873h

06/03/09 1922s

24Jun2009… 2146cofc

09-0053

09/10

STATE OF NEW HAMPSHIRE

In the Year of Our Lord Two Thousand Nine

AN ACT requiring electric utilities to offer renewable energy source options, allowing the public utilities commission to make contingent grants and loans from the greenhouse gas emissions reduction fund, and relative to using the electricity distribution charge to fund conservation and load management.

Be it Enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court convened:

1 Electric Utilities; Renewable Energy Source Option. RSA 374-F:3, V(f) is repealed and reenacted to read as follows:

(f)(1) For purposes of subparagraph (f), “renewable energy source” (RES) means a source of electricity, as defined in RSA 362-F:2, XV, that would qualify to receive renewable energy certificates under RSA 362-F, whether or not it has been designated as eligible under RSA 362-F:6, III.

(2) A utility shall provide to its customers one or more RES options, as approved by the commission, which may include RES default service provided by the utility or the provision of retail access to competitive sellers of RES attributes. Costs associated with selecting an RES option should be paid for by those customers choosing to take such option. A utility may recover all prudently incurred administrative costs of RES options from all customers, as approved by the commission.

(3) RES default service should have either all or a portion of its service attributable to a renewable energy source component procured by the utility, with any remainder filled by standard default service. The price of any RES default service shall be approved by the commission.

(4) Under any option offered, the customer shall be purchasing electricity generated by renewable energy sources or the attributes of such generation, either in connection with or separately from the electricity produced. The regional generation information system of energy certificates administered by the ISO-New England and the New England Power Pool (NEPOOL) should be considered at least one form of certification that is acceptable under this program.

(5) A utility that is required by statute to provide default service from its generation assets should use any of its owned generation assets that are powered by renewable energy for the provision of standard default service, rather than for the provision of a renewable energy source component.

(6) Utilities should include educational materials in their normal communications to their customers that explain the RES options being offered and the health and environmental benefits associated with them. Such educational materials should be compatible with any environmental disclosure requirements established by the commission.

(7) For purposes of consumer protection and the maintenance of program integrity, reasonable efforts should be made to assure that the renewable energy source component of an RES option is not separately advertised, claimed, or sold as part of any other electricity service or transaction, including compliance with the renewable portfolio standards under RSA 362-F.

(8) If RES default service is not available for purchase at a reasonable cost on behalf of consumers choosing an RES default service option, a utility may, as approved by the commission, make payments to the renewable energy fund created pursuant to RSA 362-F:10 on behalf of customers to comply with subparagraph (f).

(9) The commission shall implement subparagraph (f) through utility-specific filings. Approved RES options shall be included in individual tariff filings by utilities.

(10) A utility, with commission approval, may require that a minimum number of customers, or a minimum amount of load, choose to participate in the program in order to offer an RES option.

2 New Paragraph; Greenhouse Gas Emissions Reduction Fund. Amend RSA 125-O:23 by inserting after paragraph VII the following new paragraph:

VIII. The commission may enter into agreements for the implementation of programs under this section that are contingent, in whole or in part, on future proceeds from budget allowance auctions held within 12 months of the date such agreements become effective.

3 Electric Utility Restructuring; Implementation; Conservation, Energy Efficiency, and Load Management. Amend RSA 374-F:4, VIII(e) to read as follows:

(e) Targeted conservation, energy efficiency, and load management programs and incentives that are part of a strategy to minimize distribution costs [shall] may be included in the distribution charge[, and not included in a] or the system benefits charge, provided that system benefits charge funds are only used for customer-based energy efficiency measures, and such funding shall not exceed 10 percent of the energy efficiency portion of a utility’s annual system benefits charge funds. A proposal for such use of system benefits charge funds shall be presented to the commission for approval. Any such approval shall initially be on a pilot program basis and the results of each pilot program proposal shall be subject to evaluation by the commission.

4 Repeal. The following are repealed:

I. RSA 374-F:4, VIII(b), relative to limitations on the systems benefit charge.

II. RSA 374-F:4, VIII(d), relative to limitations on the systems benefit charge.

III. RSA 374-F:4, VIII(g), relative to limitations on the systems benefit charge.

5 Effective Date.

I. Section 1 of this act shall take effect 120 days after its passage.

II. The remainder of this act shall take effect upon its passage.

LBAO

09-0053

Amended 04/07/09

HB 395 FISCAL NOTE

AN ACT requiring electric utilities to offer renewable energy source options.

FISCAL IMPACT:

    The Public Utilities Commission states this bill, as amended by the House (Amendment #2009-0873h), may increase state, county, and local expenditures by an indeterminable amount in FY 2010 and each year thereafter. There will be no fiscal impact on state, county, and local revenue.

METHODOLOGY:

    The Public Utilities Commission states this bill requires electric utilities to offer renewable energy source (RES) options. The Commission states if the state, counties, or municipalities chose to take service under the proposed RES option, they will incur additional costs. However, as it is unknown which renewable sources may be used to generate the activity, the level of customer participation, and what portion of the RES default service will be from renewable sources (i.e., 100% from renewable sources versus 50% from renewable sources), the fiscal impact cannot be determined at this time. The Commission states it will be able to set RES default service rates using existing resources.

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