ALJ Denies Petitions For Resumption Of Certain In-Person Marketing Filed By Two Retail Suppliers
January 15, 2021 Email This Story Copyright 2010-21 EnergyChoiceMatters.com
Reporting by Paul Ring • email@example.com
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An Illinois ALJ issued a ruling that denies separate petitions from the Vistra retail suppliers, as well as IGS Energy, for the resumption of various forms of in-person retail energy marketing.
"Considering the ongoing resurgence of the COVID-19 pandemic, as noted by the AG, CUB and COFI, as well as the Commission’s denial of Staff’s Motion to Dissolve that would allow for a resumption of all in-person solicitation including door-to-door solicitation, the Administrative Law Judge finds it is not appropriate at this time to allow the resumption of in-person solicitations as requested by IGS and Vistra. Therefore, the IGS Motion and Amended Vistra Motion are denied," the ALJ said in a ruling
As previously reported, the Vistra retailers sought permission to engage in in-person solicitation of non-residential customers in those areas currently in Phase 4 of the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity’s (DCEO) Restore Illinois program
IGS had sought permission for its
employees to meet with potential customers, "in person only when a meeting and a meeting location
are mutually agreed by an IGS Home Energy Consultant ('HEC') and the customer."
The ALJ in the ruling said that, "IGS’ and Vistra’s requests ... would effectively allow door-to-door solicitation at potential customers’ premises."
Specifically, the ALJ contrasted the requested relief to the relief recently granted to the NRG suppliers (for electricity only) which allows them to conduct in-person marketing at storefronts and similar establishments, subject to various conditions (see details here)
"The Administrative Law Judge notes that the Commission recently approved an Interim Order adopting a modification of the Emergency Order to allow in-store solicitation activities for Reliant Energy et al., an alternative retail electric supplier in Docket No. 20-0310; however, the request for modification in that docket is distinguishable from the requests by IGS and Vistra here. The Commission only approved a request to resume in-store marketing consistent with the current health rules put in place by the Illinois Department of Public Health and the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, whereas IGS’ and Vistra’s requests are broader and would effectively allow door-to-door solicitation at potential customers’ premises," the ALJ said
Separately, the NRG suppliers, having received authority to conduct in-store, in-person marketing of electricity, sought authorization from the ICC to resume in-store, in-person marketing of retail natural gas plans