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PA Bulletin, Doc. No. 18-1358



[52 PA. CODE CH. 53]

Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking Order Regarding Use of Fully Projected Future Test Year; Doc. No. L-2012-2317273

[48 Pa.B. 5501]
[Saturday, September 1, 2018]

 This Secretarial Letter establishes a schedule and agendas for further stakeholder meetings in the captioned proceeding. The comment period remains suspended. This letter will be published in the Pennsylvania Bulletin and posted on the Commission website under this docket number.

 On December 22, 2017, the Commission entered the Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANOPR) Order at Docket No. L-2012-2317273 relating to use of a fully projected future test year (FPFTY) by jurisdictional energy and water/wastewater utilities in the Commonwealth.1 The ANOPR, inter alia, established February 27, 2018, as the due date for comments and late March as the time frame for a stakeholder meeting. By Secretarial Letter issued on February 26, 2018, in response to stakeholder request,2 the filing date for comments was suspended, and a stakeholder meeting was scheduled for April 3, 2018.

 Following substantive and procedural discussion of the December 22nd ANOPR Order, the consensus at the April 3rd stakeholder meeting was that further stakeholder meetings before a call for written comments would be extremely productive.

 Following the April 3rd stakeholder meeting, Commission staff sought input from stakeholders concerning the scheduling and topics/direction of discussion for the future stakeholder meetings to ensure that topic/subject matter experts (SMEs) would be available to address items on the schedule. By consensus, a preliminary meeting attended by representatives of the stakeholder utility groups, statutory advocates, and Commission staff was held on May 31, 2018, to develop such a schedule and agendas.3

 The May 31st attendees recommended four (4) stakeholder meetings to be held on Thursday, September 27, 2018; Tuesday, October 30, 2018; Wednesday, November 28, 2018; and Wednesday, January 23, 2019. The meetings will be held in Executive Chambers, Third Floor, at the Commission Office, 400 North Street, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania 17020, starting at 10 AM. The attendees proposed agendas for these suggested stakeholder meetings, as detailed below, and agreed that the pertinent ''standard data requests''4 related to each agenda topic be part of the stakeholder meeting discussion.

Suggested Agenda Topics—September 27, 2018:

 I. General Issues Concerning Provision of Info/Data at Start of Case

 a. Years of Data

 b. Confidentiality of Data

 c. Data that is Publicly Available (provide reference)

 d. Paper v. Electronic Submissions, including document retention obligations

 II. Rate Base & Depreciation (Subsection II—C & J at p. 6 of ANOPR Order)

Suggested Agenda Topics—October 30, 2018:

 I. Employee Costs/Operating Expense/Operating Revenue (Subsection II—I, G & H at p. 6 of ANOPR Order)

Suggested Agenda Topics—November 28, 2018:

 I. Taxes and Rate of Return (Subsection II—K & D at P. 6 of ANOPR Order)

 II. Income Statement and Statement of Cash Flow/Balance Sheet (Subsection II—F & E at p. 6 of ANORPR Order)

Suggested Agenda Topics—January 23, 2019:

 I. LTIIP and AAO Plan/Description of Utility Operations/Summary of Filing (Subsection II—L, B & A at p. 6 of ANOPR Order)

 II. Industry specific data (Subsection II—M at p. 6 Of ANOPR Order)

 III. Customer Notice Issues

 IV. Issues and Data Requests in Base Rate Case concerning Universal Service & Conservation Plans (May Need a Separate Meeting?)

 At the May 31st session, attendees noted the need for and potential benefits of updating the existing Exhibits A, C, and D to 52 Pa. Code § 53.53 regardless of whether FPFTY regulations stand alone in a separate exhibit, such as the draft Exhibit E in the December 22nd ANOPR Order, or are incorporated into the existing Exhibits A, C, and D.5 The May 31st attendees articulated a strong preference for stakeholders to review existing regulatory requirements and data requests that may entail production of information that is no longer relevant or used in base rate cases. The effective date for the last substantial overhaul of the data requests in Exhibits A, C, and D was June 1996. Commission staff noted that, from their perspective and not binding on the Commission, it had yet to be conclusively determined whether FPFTY regulations regarding data requests would be better set out in a separate exhibit or better incorporated into the existing industry-specific Exhibits A, C, and D.

 Additional topic areas identified for discussion at future stakeholder meetings include customer notices; the standard data requests; and issues surrounding discovery requests in base rate (or rider) proceedings related to Universal Service and Energy Conservation Plan proceedings of energy utilities. Additional discussion highlighted the extensive requirement of multiple paper copies of information that might otherwise be available electronically as well as document retention obligations.

 The May 31st attendees further suggested that, prior to each stakeholder meeting, each participant prepare and exchange a ''position paper'' on the agenda topics and commit to review all such position papers to facilitate resolution of issues where possible. The May 31st attendees suggested that the position papers be based on an agreed-upon template. A sample position paper template is attached. The position papers should be exchanged via email in a Word-accessible format. The position papers would not be binding on the parties but should reflect considerations that would give rise to reaching consensus on the topics.

 The stakeholders anticipate that the work and discussion at stakeholder meetings will assist the Commission in meeting its objectives to codify procedures and filing requirements for use of a FPFTY as required under Act 11 of 2012 and may further provide collective input on how to update the existing Exhibits A, C, and D at 52 Pa. Code § 53.53 relative to use of historic test years and future test years, as well as to identify filing requirements and standard date requests that are duplicative or no longer necessary.

 The Commission agrees that this collaborative process has significant potential to facilitate the process at this docket. Accordingly, staff is directed to continue facilitating this stakeholder meeting process in order to focus and streamline the eventual comment process, improve the end product, and facilitate the review of Chapter 53, using the schedule and agendas outlined herein. The comment period remains deferred.

 Documents pertinent to this proceeding may be accessed through the Commission's website using docket number for this proceeding and the search feature at

 If there are any questions, contact Erin Laudenslager,, or Louise Fink Smith, Parties are directed to ensure that they have entered an appearance as a party of record at this docket with the Secretary of the Commission and that they have provided, to Ms. Laudenslager and Ms. Fink Smith, the contact names, telephone numbers, and email addresses for persons in their organizations to be used for the informal exchange of information related to this proceeding. Emails to Ms. Laudenslager and Ms. Fink Smith should also be sent to



Topic Area:

 A. Current Requirement Under Existing Regulation—Exhibit A, C and/or D: [cite]

 B. Identify Any Relevant Standard Data Requests (SDR)6 : [provide sufficient details]

 C. ANOPR Proposed Change to Requirement or Proposal to Eliminate Requirement—Draft Exhibit E: [cite ANOPR Order and/or Draft Exhibit E, as applicable]

 D. Observations re ANOPR Proposal, Draft Exhibit E, and/or Standard Data Request:

 E. Rationale for Modifying/Eliminating Existing Regulation or Filing Requirement, ANOPR Proposal, Draft Exhibit E, and/or Standard Data Request:

 F. General Concerns: [use this sequence but all may not apply]

 1. Confidential

 2. Years of Data

 3. Publicly Available

 4. Burdensome

 5. Relevance

 6. Redundant or Conflicting

 7. Other

[Pa.B. Doc. No. 18-1358. Filed for public inspection August 31, 2018, 9:00 a.m.]


1  The ANOPR addresses 52 Pa. Code § 53.53 in particular and the remaining portions of Chapter 53 in general.

2  The revised timeline was supported by the Office of Consumer Advocate (OCA), the Office of Small Business Advocate (OSBA), the National Association of Water Companies—Pennsylvania Chapter (NAWC-PA Chapter), Aqua Pennsylvania, and the members of the Energy Association of Pennsylvania, Electric distribution company (EDC) members of EAP include Citizens' Electric Company; Duquesne Light Company; Metropolitan Edison Company; PECO Energy Company; Pennsylvania Electric Company; Pennsylvania Power Company; Pike County Light & Power Company; PPL Electric Utilities; UGI Utilities, Inc.-Electric Division; Wellsboro Electric Company; and West Penn Power Company. Natural gas distribution company (NGDC) members of EAP include Columbia Gas of Pennsylvania, Inc.; Leatherstocking Gas Company, LLC; National Fuel Gas Distribution Corp.; PECO Energy Company; Peoples Natural Gas Company, LLC; Peoples Gas Company (formerly Peoples TWP); Philadelphia Gas Works; Pike County Light & Power Company; UGI Central Penn Gas, Inc.; UGI Penn Natural Gas, Inc.; UGI Utilities, Inc.; and Valley Energy, Inc.

3  The May 31st attendees included Christine Hoover (Office of Consumer Advocate); Elizabeth Triscari (Office of Small Business Advocate); Gina Miller (Commission Bureau of Investigation and & Enforcement); Alex Stahl (Aqua); Renee Marquis (Aqua); Erin Sweeney (Aqua); Nicole Paloney (Columbia Gas/Nisource); Donna MJ Clark (Energy Association of Pennsylvania); John Cox (PAWC); JoAnne Lontz (PAWC); Beth Johnson (PPL); Mark Morrow (UGI); Rein Laudenslager (Commission Bureau of Technical Utility Services), and Louise Fink Smith (Commission Law Bureau).

4  Some utilities provide ''standard'' information with their filings. This ''standard'' information is filed in anticipatory response to ''standard data requests'' that have developed over time but are not codified in regulations. This process shortens the discovery interval by eliminating the need for the statutory advocates to request the ''standard'' information. The standard data requests were not specifically factored into the draft Exhibit E in the December 22nd Order.

5  Section 53.53 relates to ''information to be furnished with proposed general rate increase filings in excess of $1 million'' when the covered utilities file their proposed tariffs or tariff supplements. The responses required by Section 53.53 are in addition to ''data required by other provisions'' and in addition to discovery requests and interrogatories. Exhibit A covers all utilities except communications, electric, and water and waste water. Exhibit C covers electric utilities. Exhibit D covers water and waste water utilities. (Exhibit B, covering communications utilities, is not at issue because communications utilities cannot use a FPFTY.)

6  Some utilities provide ''standard'' information with their filings. This ''standard'' information is in essence filed in anticipatory response to ''standard data requests'' that have developed over time but are not codified in regulations. This process shortens the discovery interval by eliminating the need for the statutory advocates to request the ''standard'' information. The standard data requests were not specifically factored into the draft Exhibit E in the December 22nd Order.

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