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Regulator Proposes New Security Requirements For Retail Suppliers, Up To $2 Million

Would Institute Biennial Review Of Supplier Licenses

Proposes New Rules For Rate Board, Rates On Supplier's Website

November 22, 2019

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Copyright 2010-19
Reporting by Paul Ring •

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The Connecticut PURA has issued proposed revisions to the electric supplier licensing rules

The draft rules would modify the electric supplier security requirements.

Under the draft, a supplier shall maintain an amount of security based on its load served in the previous calendar year as indicated by the electric distribution company filings in the annual renewable portfolio standards docket or other means indicated by the Authority, according to the following schedule:

• Annual load up to 100,000 MWh - $250,000

• Annual load 100,001 to 499,999 MWh - $500,000

• Annual load 500,000 to 1,000,000 MWh - $1 million

• Annual load > 1,000,000 MWh - $2 million

Under the current rules, suppliers shall maintain security in the amount of $250,000 or five per cent of its estimated gross receipts for its first full year of operation, not to exceed $250,000

The draft changes also include provisions for maintaining (and demonstrating compliance with) up to date security instruments and modifying the level of security based on any change in load

The draft rules provide that, beginning on April 15, 2022, PURA would conduct a biennial proceeding to review all licensed electric suppliers

Currently, supplier licenses last for five years and suppliers apply for renewal based on their individual expiration dates

Under the biennial review, suppliers would pay a $2,500 fee and submit various information to PURA for the review. Currently, the fee for a renewal is $250

The draft rules contain new rules for the state's electricity shopping rate board, as follows (terms defined below):

(1) All electric suppliers must honor all generation rates the supplier has posted to the Rate Board.

(2) Licensed electric suppliers shall self-report all generally available generation offers to the Connecticut Rate Board following a process established by the Public Utilities Regulatory Authority.

(3) All generally available rates must be all-inclusive.

(4) All electric suppliers must follow standardized language issue by the Authority when self-reporting.

(5) Rates that appear on a supplier’s internet website must be posted to the Rate Board, thereby aligning these resources.

(6) Rates entered into the Rate Board database cannot exceed five decimal places, e.g., $0.00000, but will be displayed on the rate board in cents per kWh, rounded to two decimal places.

(7) Each offer that is self-reported to the Rate Board database is considered a regulatory compliance filing

Regarding rates or offers posted to an electric supplier’s website, the draft rules provide:

(1) All electric suppliers must honor all rates or offers posted to their websites.

(2) All rates or offers posted to an electric supplier’s website including a claim of savings must include a clear and conspicuous disclosure of how the savings will be calculated and what the supplier will do if the savings are not realized, together with any time or other limitations the supplier may impose.

The draft rules provide that an electric supplier shall maintain its company website to include the following:

(1) the supplier’s official name and trade name(s), if any;

(2) all PURA docket numbers and titles pertaining specifically to the supplier to show its regulatory history in Connecticut, including all licensing and relicensing dockets and history of dockets of companies acquired through mergers or license transfers, and all PURA investigation dockets that have been concluded;

(3) customer service contact information, including a phone number at which a live company representative(s) (not an answering service) must be available during normal business hours;

(4) PURA contact information

(5) The website must also list and provide information concerning all generally available offers, renewable products and information about the source of renewable energy (e.g., RECs), standard contracts, and enrollment forms;

(6) Any other information deemed necessary by the Authority.

As used in the draft, "generally available rate" means a generation rate that is offered to [all] customers taking service under a rate tariff or a rate that is offered to a class of residential or business customers. Rates that are offered through a supplier’s website are deemed to be generally available.

"Offer" means the information provided to consumers for each product or record displayed on the rate board. This information includes, but is not limited to, the applicable EDC tariff and customer class, term in billing cycles, rate, cancellation fee, enrollment fee, restrictions and other product specific information.

"All inclusive rate" means a rate that includes all generation-related costs or charges and that no other charges can be added.

"Rate" means the all-inclusive cost per kWh for each generation offer.

The draft rules would require suppliers to annually report to PURA a list of third party agents (Form 6).

Docket 19-10-41

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