Regulator Closes Broad Retail Market Docket, Says Rulemaking Forthcoming On Disclosure Label Changes
October 30, 2018 Email This Story Copyright 2010-17 EnergyChoiceMatters.com
Reporting by Paul Ring • firstname.lastname@example.org
The following story is brought free of charge to readers byEC Infosystems, the exclusive EDI provider of EnergyChoiceMatters.com
The Massachusetts DPU has closed Docket 14-140, which had addressed a variety of retail electricity marketing issues, stating that the only remaining issue in the docket -- revisions to the disclosure label -- must be accomplished through a rulemaking
The DPU said that it will address the revisions to the information disclosure label requirements in an upcoming rulemaking.
The Department had originally opened Docket 14-140 to address the following five initiatives: (1) developing a shopping for competitive supply website; (2) revising the existing information disclosure label; (3) eliminating the basic service bill recalculation for residential and small C&I customers; (4) establishing reporting requirements for door-to-door marketing; and (5) establishing reporting requirements and rules for the assignment of customers to another competitive supplier.
As previously reported, the DPU has issued orders concerning all of the issues identified above except for the revising the existing information disclosure label
Department regulations require all suppliers to prepare information disclosure labels that include information on their products related to the following: (1) price and price variability; (2) customer service; (3) fuel source and air emissions; and (4) labor characteristics. 220 CMR 11.06(2); see G.L. c. 164, §§ 1F(5) and (6). The regulations also require all competitive suppliers to distribute their labels to customers before initiation of service and on a quarterly basis thereafter. 220 CMR 11.06(4).
In D.P.U. 14-140, the Department had stated that it sought to identify revisions to the existing information disclosure labels that would improve the usefulness of the price-related information provided to customers, with the goal of allowing customers to make more informed decisions in the purchasing electricity supply and to minimize customer confusion and dissatisfaction. As a result, the Department held two technical sessions to discuss potential revisions to the information disclosure on May 27, 2015, and December 2, 2015. In addition, the Department put forth a number of different proposals and sought comments from stakeholders regarding the proposed changes to the information disclosure labels.
"Unlike the other issues addressed through the D.P.U. 14-140 proceeding, the proposed revisions to the information disclosure label requirements constitute an amendment to the existing regulations, 220 CMR 11.06. To amend a regulation, the Department must conduct a rulemaking. 220 CMR 2.00; G.L. c. 30A, §§ 1(5) and 2. Therefore, the Department will close D.P.U. 14-140, and address the revisions to the information disclosure label requirements in an upcoming rulemaking," the DPU said
The DPU said that it anticipates that the material developed through D.P.U. 14-140 process (i.e., technical sessions and responses to written proposals), will inform the rulemaking and the proposed amendments to the information disclosure label requirements regulations.