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Retail Providers Raise Operational, Compliance Issues To Be Addressed As Texas PUC Considers AEP Texas Acquisition Of McAllen Area Customers From Oncor

AEP, Oncor To Hold Working Session To Identify Issues Not Previously Raised

July 8, 2019

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Copyright 2010-19
Reporting by Paul Ring •

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The Alliance for Retail Markets has submitted a list of issues proposed to be addressed in the Texas PUC's consideration of the application of AEP Texas to acquire Oncor's McAllen/Mission service area

As first reported by, Oncor and AEP Texas have filed for approval of a sale of Oncor's McAllen/Mission service area to AEP Texas. Oncor serves approximately 3,000 electric delivery customers in the McAllen/Mission area, which it acquired in the Sharyland transaction.

Among other things, ARM proposed that the following issues be addressed:

• If the AEP Texas base rates and rate riders applicable to the transitioned customers in the Mission/McAllen area do not match the base rates and rate riders that will be assessed to either the customers in AEP Texas' Central Division or its North Division at the time of the transition, how may retail electric providers (REP) comply with the Electricity Facts Label (EFL) requirements in Texas Administrative Code (TAC) § 25.475?

• What is the appropriate post-closing date upon which the transition of customers should begin?

                a. Should the transition of customers commence on a date upon which other new and/or modified AEP Texas rates take effect in order to avoid subjecting the transitioned customers in the Mission/McAllen area to successive rate changes in a short period of time?

                b. Should the transition of customers commence upon a date following the approval and effective date of any new and modified rates in AEP Texas pending general rate case, Docket No. 49494, Application of AEP Texas Inc. for Authority to Change Rates?

• What is the proposed duration of the transition period of the customers in the Mission/McAllen area? What cycles will the Applicants use for the transition?

• What notice must be provided to the affected customers in the Mission/McAllen area prior to the transition?

• Will the transition of a customer in the Mission/McAllen area and subsequent establishment of a new ESI ID for the customer not be considered an enrollment in a new retail electric product and, consequently, not require the REP of Record to comply with the authorization disclosures and verification requirements in the Commission's rules, consistent with the transition of customers in Docket No. 47469, Joint Report and Application of Sharyland Utilities, L.P., Sharyland Distribution & Transmission Services, L.L.C., and Oncor Electric Delivery Company LLC for Transfer of Facilities, Transfer of Rights Under and Amendment of Certificates of Convenience and Necessity, and for Other Regulatory Approvals, Final Order (Oct. 13, 2017)?

• How will the Applicants, ERCOT, affected REPs, and other parties identify and operationalize the necessary steps to ensure the smooth and timely transition of customers in the Mission/McAllen area beginning on the initial date of the transition? The issues to be addressed in this process include, but are not limited to, the following:

                a. What type of notice will AEP Texas provide to the affected customers' REPs of Record with respect to the timing of the customer's transition date and the AEP Texas rate class to which the customer will be assigned?

                b. What market transaction(s) must the REP of Record submit to transition an affected customer?

                c. How will switch-holds previously applied to a transitioned customer be handled?

                d. How will cancel/rebills for transitioned customers be handled?

                e. Will moratoriums for switching and/or move-out/move-in transactions in the Mission/McAllen area be imposed? If so, what are the parameters for any such moratorium?

                f. What is the schedule for the replacement of Interval Data Recorder (IDR) meters for affected transitioned customers?

                g. How will AEP reset demand ratchets for affected transitioned customers?

ARM said that, "While ARM recognizes the questions raised in Issue No. 10, as well as other planning and operational questions not specified there, may be addressed in workshops, meetings, and market calls with Commission Staff, ERCOT, affected customers, affected REPs, the Office of Public Utility Counsel (OPUC), and other parties in this proceeding, ARM identifies the specific issues there to underscore the importance of a thorough discussion and resolution of such matters in a timely fashion prior to the commencement of a customer transition."

Separately, AEP Texas & Oncor announced that they will host an "Issues Gathering Working Session" on July 17 in preparation for the second Oncor/AEP Texas Mission-McAllen ESIID Transition Workshop on July 23

"In preparation for the second workshop related to the Oncor/AEP Texas Mission-McAllen ESIID Transition to be held on July 23rd, AEP Texas & Oncor will host an Issues Gathering Working Session the week prior to gather any outstanding issues identified by Market Participants that have not been raised or addressed at the first workshop," the TDUs said in a market notice

The TDUs said in the notice, "At the conclusion of Workshop I, held June 4th, it was requested that any issues identified by Market Participants related to the Mission-McAllen ESIID transition be provided to AEP Texas & Oncor by July 1st, but no issues were submitted. Therefore, in a final attempt to allow MPs another opportunity to raise and discuss newly identified issues, AEP Texas & Oncor will host an 'Issues Gathering Working Session' on July 17th."

Both the working session and Workshop II will be held at the ERCOT METCenter in Austin

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