SB692 (2020) Detail

Relative to certain costs of the public utilities commission for participation in regional activities.


SB 692-FN - AS AMENDED BY THE SENATE

 

03/12/2020   1038s

2020 SESSION

20-2723

10/08

 

SENATE BILL 692-FN

 

AN ACT relative to certain costs of the public utilities commission for participation in regional activities.

 

SPONSORS: Sen. Feltes, Dist 15; Sen. Hennessey, Dist 5; Sen. Fuller Clark, Dist 21; Sen. Sherman, Dist 24; Sen. Watters, Dist 4

 

COMMITTEE: Energy and Natural Resources

 

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ANALYSIS

 

This bill requires the public utilities commission to assess certain costs of participation in regional activities to gas and electric distribution utilities.

 

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Matter which is either (a) all new or (b) repealed and reenacted appears in regular type.

03/12/2020   1038s 20-2723

10/08

 

STATE OF NEW HAMPSHIRE

 

In the Year of Our Lord Two Thousand Twenty

 

AN ACT relative to certain costs of the public utilities commission for participation in regional activities.

 

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

 

1  Short Title.  This act shall be known as the Granite State Ratepayer Protection Act.

2  Public Utilities Commission; Participation in Regional Activities; Costs.  Amend RSA 374-F:8 to read as follows:

374-F:8  Participation in Regional Activities.  The commission shall advocate for New Hampshire interests before the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and other regional and federal bodies.  The commission shall participate in the activities of the New England Conference of Public Utility Commissioners, the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners, and the New England States Committee on Electricity, or other similar organizations, and work with the New England Independent System Operator and NEPOOL to advance the interests of New Hampshire with respect to wholesale electric issues, including policy goals relating to fuel diversity, renewable energy, and energy efficiency, and to assure nondiscriminatory open access to a safe, adequate, and reliable transmission system at just and reasonable prices.  The commission shall advocate against proposed regional or federal rules or policies that are inconsistent with the policies, rules, or laws of New Hampshire.  In its participation in regional activities, the commission shall consider how other states' policies will impact New Hampshire rates and work to prevent or minimize any rate impact the commission determines to be unjust or unreasonable, including, but not limited to, unjust or unreasonable returns on equity.  The commission shall directly assess gas and electric distribution utilities the costs and expenses of fulfilling its duties under this section, including the costs and expenses of assistants hired by the commission, based on the annual revenues of the utilities in the same manner as issued in assessing the annual operating expenses of the commission, or as appropriate and equitable on a case by case basis.  Such costs and expenses shall not include any part of the salaries of the commissioners or of employees of the commission, or the commission's membership fees for the New England Conference of Public Utility Commissioners and the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners.  The commission may make and the utilities shall pay such assessments monthly, quarterly, or annually at the commission's election.  The commission shall by order establish rate recovery mechanisms for any public utility assessment imposed pursuant to this section.  Such rate recovery mechanisms shall adjust at least annually to recover any change in a utility’s assessment.

3  Effective Date.  This act shall take effect upon its passage.

 

      LBAO

20-2723

Amended 3/23/20

 

SB 692-FN- FISCAL NOTE

AS AMENDED BY THE SENATE (AMENDMENT #2020-1038s)

 

AN ACT relative to certain costs of the public utilities commission for participation in regional activities.

 

FISCAL IMPACT:      [ X ] State              [    ] County               [    ] Local              [    ] None

 

 

 

Estimated Increase / (Decrease)

STATE:

FY 2020

FY 2021

FY 2022

FY 2023

   Appropriation

$0

$0

$0

$0

   Revenue

$0

$0

$0

$0

   Expenditures

$0

$0

$0

$0

Funding Source:

  [    ] General            [    ] Education            [    ] Highway           [ X ] Other - Utility Assessment Revenue

 

 

 

 

 

METHODOLOGY:

This bill requires the Public Utilities Commission (PUC) to directly assess gas and electric distribution utilities for the costs and expenses of fulfilling its duties under RSA 374-F:8.  The statute requires the PUC to advocate for New Hampshire interests before the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and other regional and federal bodies, and to consider how other states' policies will impact New Hampshire rates and work to prevent or minimize any rate impact the commission determines to be unjust or unreasonable.  Certain costs, such as salaries of the commissioners or employees of the commission would be excluded from this assessment and would continue to be assessed under RSA 363-A.  The result would be an allocation of the cost of regional activities to the electric and gas utilities, to whom the regional activities relate, rather than to telecommunication and relatively small water utilities that are not affected by the PUC activities under RSA 374-F:8.  These cost are currently funded by a general utility assessment applicable to all utilities in the state.  The bill would require the PUC to assess only electric and gas utilities for the regional activities under RSA 374-F:8.

 

AGENCIES CONTACTED:

Public Utilities Commission

 

Links

SB692 at GenCourtMobile
SB692 Discussion

Action Dates

Date Body Type
Jan. 28, 2020 Senate Hearing
March 12, 2020 Senate Floor Vote
March 11, 2020 Senate Floor Vote
March 11, 2020 Senate Floor Vote

Bill Text Revisions

SB692 Revision: 8373 Date: March 24, 2020, 7:23 a.m.
SB692 Revision: 8011 Date: Jan. 14, 2020, 4:43 p.m.

Docket

Date Status
Jan. 8, 2020 Introduced 01/08/2020 and Referred to Energy and Natural Resources; SJ 2
Jan. 28, 2020 Hearing: 01/28/2020, Room 103, SH, 09:45 am; SC 4
March 11, 2020 Committee Report: Ought to Pass with Amendment # 2020-1038s, 03/11/2020; SC 10
March 12, 2020 Committee Report: Ought to Pass with Amendment # 2020-1038s, 03/12/2020; SC 10
March 12, 2020 Special Order to 03/12/2020, Without Objection, MA; 03/11/2020 SJ 6
March 12, 2020 Committee Amendment # 2020-1038s, AA, VV; 03/12/2020; SJ 7
March 12, 2020 Ought to Pass with Amendment 2020-1038s, MA, VV; OT3rdg; 03/12/2020; SJ 7
June 30, 2020 Introduced and Laid on Table MA VV 06/30/2020