September 29, 2000


 NEM's Publishes National Energy Tax Policy Guidelines

NEM published its, "Tax Policy Guidelines for Energy Restructuring." The Guidelines address how restructured energy markets can lower state expenditures and raise revenues without new energy taxes. The full text of the Tax Policy Guidelines is available on the NEM Website.

 Member Comments Requested on NEM's "National Energy Technology Standards"

NEM is preparing a draft, tentatively titled, "National Energy Technology Standards," to be discussed and voted on at the Executive Committee Meeting on October 30, 2000. All comments on the Policy Paper are welcome and must be received by Noon on Monday, October 2, 2000.

 NEM is very pleased to announce that SmartEnergy has joined as a corporate member. Patrick G. Jeffrey, Gautam Chandra, Jon F. Sorenson, and Tony Lopez-Lopez will represent SmartEnergy within NEM, and Mr. Jeffrey will be the primary liaison.

SmartEnergy, headquartered in Woburn, MA, delivers energy solutions to customers in the Business-to-Business and Business-to-Consumer markets. The company delivers electricity and natural gas solutions in deregulated markets via an electronic platform. This process collapses the numerous inefficiencies that exist in the current supply chain, yielding significant economic, service, and other value-added customer benefits.

 NEM is very pleased to announce that SPL WorldGroup has joined as a corporate member. James E. Cuccaro, Hettie Wiesner, and Rachel Scott will represent SPL WorldGroup within NEM.

SPL WorldGroup offers customer care and billing solutions to utility and energy services companies. SPL's proven CIS PLUS product integrates customer information, billing, accounts receivable, marketing, customer contacts, open access, and service functions to provide a low-risk solution. CIS PLUS delivers 24-hour, real-time support for both multi-utility and non-utility products and services.

 Business Opportunities for Members

(a) NEM has been contacted for a member to provide natural gas supply and related transportation to five manufacturing plants, four in Canada and one in Michigan. Interested members should contact headquarters.

(b) Pursuant to the terms of the SoCalGas settlement, Altra was to provide an electronic trading platform for OFO day imbalance "chip" trading, monthly imbalance trading, backbone transmission rights trading, and storage rights trading. Altra has informed SoCalGas it will not perform these services. SoCalGas has petitioned the California PUC to amend its settlement to use a different supplier to provide these services.


 ISO New England Price Caps

The Commission clarified its previous Order requiring ISO New England to impose a $1,000/MWh temporary bid cap for its energy and automatic generation control markets through October 31, 2000, in instances in which an OP4 condition has been triggered. The Commission accepted ISO New England's definition of "during OP4 conditions" such that ISO New England can impose price caps for the entire day when an OP4 event is forecasted to occur, or for the remainder of the day following implementation of a non-forecasted, real-time OP4 action. The full text of the Order is available on the NEM Website.

 NYISO Modifications to Installed Capacity Recall Procedures and Market Design

The NYISO has filed a request with the Commission to modify its Installed Capacity recall procedures and market design. The NYISO submitted proposed revisions to its Market Administration and Control Area Service Tariff to reflect the modifications and requested the revisions be effective November 21, 2000. The following documents filed by the NYISO are available on the NEM Website:

State Issues

New York

 New Litigation Schedule in NYSEG Back-Out Rate Proceeding

The Commission denied NYSEG's Petition for Rehearing in the Back-Out Rate proceeding permitting the current review to go forward. NEM is an active party to this proceeding. Members interested in participating should contact headquarters. The ALJ has established a new litigation schedule as follows:

  • NYSEG Testimony Due - October 4, 2000;
  • Staff and Other Parties Testimony Due - October 18, 2000;
  • Responsive Testimony Due - October 30, 2000;
  • Prehearing Conference (via telephone) - November 2, 2000; and
  • Evidentiary Hearings to Begin - November 6, 2000.

The full text of the Commissions's Order Denying Rehearing and the Litigation Schedule are available on the NEM Website.

 NFG Gas Proceeding Proposed Settlement

Parties to the NFG gas proceeding have submitted a settlement agreement with the Commission. The non-confidential portion of the proposed settlement provides that:

  • Distribution will provide an aggregate credit of $10 million to customer bills (including marketer bills) for a 12-month period beginning October 1, 2000. There will be an additional bill credit of $7.6 million, for the 12-month period ending September 2001.
  • NFG will be kept whole for back-out credits, and the exact recovery mechanism is to be decided in future negotiations.
  • NFG will share earnings on equity in excess of 11.5% with its customers on a 50/50 basis.

Comments on the settlement are due October 3, 2000. The full text of Commission's Request for Comments Including a Summary of the Settlement are available on the NEM Website. Due to confidentiality concerns, members that wish to review the full text of the proposed settlement agreement should contact NEM headquarters.

 Central Hudson Electric and Gas Proceedings

The following procedural schedule has been set in the Central Hudson electric and gas proceedings:

  • Central Hudson Expected to Update its Previously Filed Position - October 6, 2000;
  • Responsive Testimony Due - November 17, 2000;
  • Party Rebuttals Due - December 19, 2000; and
  • Hearings - January 16, 2001.

 ConEd and O&R Gas Restructuring Proceedings

The next meeting of the ConEd gas restructuring proceeding is scheduled for Wednesday, October 4, 2000, at the Commission's Penn Plaza office. The next meeting of the O&R gas restructuring proceeding is scheduled for Friday, October 6, 2000, at the Commission's Penn Plaza office. NEM members interested in participating in these proceedings should contact headquarters.

 Competitive Billing Proceeding

The utilities have been directed by the Commission to file tariff amendments on competitive billing. Staff conducted a stakeholders meeting on September 25, 2000, to facilitate utility coordination of tariff content, structure, and language. An NEM member representative was present at the proceeding. The full text of the Order on Competitive Billing is available on the NEM Website.

New Jersey

 Supplier Fee Proceeding

BPU Staff has advised NEM that the Board will probably take up the issue of parties' intervenor status in the supplier fee proceeding on October 11, 2000, and it is not anticipated any party will be denied intervenor status. It is expected that a procedural schedule will be issued at the next agenda meeting.

 Board Sets Storage Requirement for Interruptible Gas Customers

The Board is requiring that interruptible natural gas customers must maintain a seven-day supply of an alternate fuel source. The specific requirements include:

  • As of November 1st each year, interruptible customers using #2 fuel, #4 fuel, jet fuel or kerosene must have seven days of alternate fuel either on hand or through additional firm contractual supply arrangements;
  • Customers must submit an alternate fuel certification to the gas utilities to verify compliance;
  • Exempt customers include those certifying they use non-distillate fuels as an alternate supply and wholesale electric generators; and
  • A penalty for non-compliance and "burn through" will be set at ten times the prevailing tariffed rate.

The full text of the regulation will posted on the NEM Website when made available electronically.

 PSE&G Rate Proceeding

PSE&G submitted a brief in support of the Board's Orders in the appeal of its rate proceeding. The full text of PSE&G's Brief is available on the NEM Website.


 POLR/SOLR Proceeding Comments

NEM has submitted comments, including its "National Guidelines for Designing and Pricing Default Energy and Related Services," in the POLR/SOLR proceeding, outlining the functions of the provider of last resort. The full text of NEM's Comments as well as NEM's Default Paper are available on the NEM Website

PPL Utilities and PPL EnergyPlus have submitted comments asserting that an alternative supplier should not function as the provider of last resort unless the utility is unable to perform that function. The full text of the Comments of PPL Resources is available on the NEM Website.

 Consumer Advocate Comments on Pennsylvania Electric and Metropolitan Edison Restructuring Plans

The Consumer Advocate argues that the proposed reconciliation of divestiture proceeds and rate treatments advanced by Pennsylvania Electric and Metropolitan Edison have not been resolved by the parties and should be subject to more formal review. The full text of the Consumer Advocate's Answers in the Pennsylvania Electric and Metropolitan Edison proceedings are available on the NEM Website.


 Competitive Metering Workgroup

NEM has been requested to have member representatives provide insights on the definition and future vision of the provision of competitive metering services at a meeting tentatively scheduled for October 13, 2000. NEM members interested in participating should contact headquarters ASAP.

 Commission Approves Environmental Disclosure Labels

The Commission has approved the Environmental Disclosure Labels developed by the Emissions Disclosure Working Group. The full text of the Environmental Disclosure Labels is available on the NEM Website.

 Demand Side Management Procedural Schedule

The Commission has issued a revised schedule in the demand side management proceeding as follows:

  • Data Requests on Proposals Due - September 12, 2000;
  • Responses to Data Requests Due - September 26, 2000;
  • Staff's Compilation of Programs to be Filed - October 6, 2000; and
  • Comments to be Filed with the Commission - October 18, 2000.


 Natural Gas Marketer Certification Proceeding

Contrary to NEM's position, Peoples Natural Gas has submitted comments in the natural gas marketer certification proceeding asserting that: utilities should set financial qualification criteria for marketers in their systems, the definition of small and large users should correspond to the language in the utilities' tariffs, and utilities should be responsible for setting delivery failure penalties. The full text of the Comments of Peoples Natural Gas is available on the NEM Website.

The Consumer Advocate's comments support the need for slamming penalties, adoption of the Commission's proposed definition of "small user" as an end user with usage under 25,000 therms in any month and under 100,000 therms in any 12-month period, and compilation of a comparative list of marketer price and service information for customers. The full text of the Comments of the Consumer Advocate are available on the NEM Website.