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April 22, 2005
NEM's Annual Restructuring Conference

NEM's Annual Spring Restructuring Conference will be held at the Marriott Metro Center on April 26-27, 2005 in Washington, DC. The VIP reception will be held at the Canadian Embassy. A number of Senators and Ambassadors have confirmed attendance at the reception. Many thanks to Centrica, Commerce Energy Group, ESG, Excelergy, Interstate Gas Supply, Constellation NewEnergy, Proliance and SAP for offering to sponsor this event.

Speakers this year include FERC Chairman Patrick Wood, FERC Commissioner Kelly, CA Deputy Secretary of Energy Joseph Desmond, Orange and Rockland Utilities President John McMahon, MADTE Chairman Paul Afonso and Chairman Alan Schriber from Ohio. In addition to those mentioned above, Michigan PSC Chair Laura Chappelle, Ronald Cerniglia of the New York PSC, and Jeanne Fox of the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities have also confirmed.

Sessions will include: 1) Serving the Public Interest: Shifting Commodity Risks to the Marketplace, Modification of the Obligation to Serve and Incentives for Sustainable Growth; 2) Transition to a Competitive Market Cutting Edge Accelerated Customer Migration Strategies, Incentives and Timing of Utilities Exit from the Merchant Function. To sign-up for this conference or to view the agenda for the two day event, please click here.

House Considers Energy Policy Act of 2005

The House is considering H.R. 6, the Energy Policy Act of 2005. The bill is substantially similar to the bill passed by the House in 2003. Bill provisions include: 1) FERC is to certify an Electric Reliability Organization charged with establishing and enforcing reliability standards for the bulk power system, subject to FERC's review; 2) FERC is authorized to issue permits for transmission construction in a "national interest electric transmission corridor" as designated by the Secretary of Energy; 3) FERC shall encourage the deployment of advanced transmission technologies; 4) an Office of Transmission and Distribtion is to be established at the Department of Energy; 5) unregulated transmitting utilities may be required to provide transmission services at comparable rates, terms and conditions to those they apply to themselves and that are not unduly discriminatory or preferential; 6) It is the "sense of Congress" that all transmitting utilities in interstate commerce should voluntarily become members of RTOs/ISOs; 7) FERC's SMD NOPR is remanded for reconsideration and no final rule mandating a standard electricity market design may be issued before October 31, 2006, or take effect before December 31, 2006; 8) Load serving entities holding firm transmission rights (FTRs) to meet service obligations are entitled to use those FTRs to deliver energy to meet service obligations, and FERC can make transmission rights not used to meet service obligations available to other entities; 9) FERC must initiate a rulemaking on incentive-based rate treatments for the transmission of electric energy in interstate commerce by public utilities; 10) electric utilities must offer time-based rates and provide customers with time-based meters subject to state PUC reviews for appropriateness; 11) PUHCA is repealed; 12) FERC must issue rules establishing an electronic information system to provide itself and the public with access to information to facilitate price transparency and participation in markets; 13) round trip trading is prohibited; 14) FERC must issue rules requiring jurisdictional entities to report information about the availability and prices of natural gas sold at wholesale in interstate commerce to FERC and price publishers; 15) civil and criminal penalties for Federal Power Act and Natural Gas Act violations are increased; 16) FERC has refund authority for short-term sales of electric energy in violation of Commission rules; 17) FERC can abrogate or modify executed contracts upon a finding that its failure to act would be contrary to the public interest, unless the contract expressly provides another standard of review; 18) FTC may issue rules to protect disclosure of consumer information obtained in connection with the sale or delivery of electric energy to consumers; and 19) FTC may issue slamming and cramming rules for electric consumers. The full text of the Energy Policy Act of 2005 is available on the NEM Website.

New Jersey
Click here to view all past updates.
Utilities File to Collect Increased Transmission Rates from BGS Customers

PSEG, JCP&L and ACE requested increases to transmission rates paid by BGS customers to be effective April 26, 2005. The increases are due to the request of PSEG power companies to recover reliability must run costs. PJM has indicated that these costs would be charged to transmission customers in the same way as other zonal transmission charges. "These charges to transmission customers should come within the scope of the adjustments to supplier payments contemplated in the 2004 and 2005 BGS-FP Supplier Master Agreeements and in the 2004 and 2005 BGS-CIEP Supplier Master Agreements." A FERC ruling on the PSEG request is expected by the end of the month.

New York
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Commission Approves ConEd Electric Unbundled Rates

The Commission approved backout credits and unbundled rates for ConEd electric consumers. The approved supply credits (in mills/kwh) are as follows: SC1 customers - Supply 1.5, Supply/Collection 2.2, Total 3.7; SC7 customers - Supply 1.5, Supply/Collection 2.2, Total 3.7; SC2 - Supply 1.1, Supply/Collection 1.6, Total 2.7; and other SCs - Supply .6, Supply/Collection .4, Total 1.0. The backout credit for billing and payment processing for electric or combined service customers receiving a single bill is increased from $.65 to $.94. The backout credit for billing and payment processing for natural gas customers remains at $.65. Competitive metering credits were also approved that vary depending on the type of metering equipment used. The Commission also approved a lost revenue recovery mechanism providing for a transition adjustment charge of which the first fifty percent will be allocated to full service customers and the remainder will be allocated to all customers. The full text of the ConEd Order is available on the NEM Website.

NFG Rate Proposal Filed

NFG filed a Joint Proposal on a retail choice program. The proposal provides that current backout credits will be replaced with unbundled rates for merchant service and billing service. (See Appendix A hotlinked here). The proposal also provides for a purchase of receivables program with a discount rate of 2.6% for residential customers and .71% for C&I customers for the first two years. NFG will provide an outline for a Discounted Retail Access Transportation Service, akin to the O&R PowerSwitch model, within 30 days of Commission approval of the proposal. A collaborative will be convened to study a possible mass market migration pilot program. Additionally, NFG will develop a pilot program to support marketer hedged price options. The proposal also provides migration incentives for NFG. The full texts of the Joint Proposal and Appendices are available on the NEM Website.

ConEd and O&R Hedges Phased-Out for Time-of-Use Customers

The Commission approved proposals by ConEd and O&R to permit the phase-out of hedged instruments for mandatory time-of-use customers starting with hedges that expire on or after April 30, 2005, for ConEd and on or after May 1, 2005, for O&R. The proposals were made pursuant to the Commission's Retail Policy Statement addressing utility portfolio management strategies. The full text of the Order is available on the NEM Website.

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