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Fortnightly Magazine - September 15 1995

Indiana Rules Coal Law Unconstitutional

Phillip S. Cross

Mirroring an earlier opinion by a federal district court, the Indiana Court of Appeals has struck down a state law that allowed regulators to offer special rate treatment and construction project preapproval to utilities that develop clean air compliance plans that would maximize the use of high-sulfur coal mined in the state. The court remanded the case to the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission and agreed with a prior finding by the U.S. District Court (S.D.

People

Peter B. Lilly has been named president and COO of Peabody Holding Co. Peabody is the world's largest private producer and marketer of coal. Lilly will continue to report to Irl F. Englehardt, Peabody Holding's chairman and CEO. Englehardt was recently named v.p. of Hanson Industries' energy group.The board of directors of The Dayton Power & Light Co. has elected Arthur G. Meyer treasurer.

IES Utilities, Inc. has named James E. Hoffman executive v.p. of customer service and energy delivery.

Local Telco Regulation too Broad, Court Says

Phillip S. Cross

The Michigan Court of Appeals has directed the Michigan Public Service Commission (PSC) to expand its deregulation of telecommunications markets in compliance with a 1991 state law revamping telecommunications. It said that the PSC had defined too broadly which types of services should remain regulated under the 1991 law, the Michigan Telecommunications Act (MTAct).

S.F. Bay Area Cities Join Forces

Lori A. Burkhart

Municipalities in the San Francisco Bay area are joining together to form an electric buying group in anticipation of the deregulation of the California electric market. The group, the Association of Bay Area Governments (ABAG), will flex its collective buying power first in natural gas.

Gas DSM Plan Found Deficient

Phillip S. Cross

While setting rates for Union Gas Ltd., a natural gas local distribution company (LDC), the Ontario Energy Board has found the company's demand-side management (DSM) plan deficient, and required shareholders to pay for any required remedies. The Board added, however, that denial of the DSM budget would be contrary to the public interest.

It said that the plan as presented was "essentially a marketing plan" for supplying energy efficiency goods and services (em one that fell short of DSM guidelines.

Boston Edison Hits Pay Dirt with Call Options

Lori A. Burkhart

Boston Edison Co. (BE), the first investor-owned electric utility in the nation to issue a request for proposals to secure options for buying wholesale electricity, now has received bids for more than 4,300 megawatts, with some offers for 1998 priced between three and four cents per kilowatt-hour.

New Jersey is Cautious on NGV Investment

Phillip S. Cross

The New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (BPU) has once again refused to grant "blanket approval" of an investment program for natural gas vehicle (NGV) refueling stations proposed by Public Service Electric and Gas Co. (PSE&G).

Nevada Delays Merger

Lori A. Burkhart

The Nevada Public Service Commission (PSC) has postponed further hearings indefinitely on the proposed merger between Sierra Pacific Power Co. (SPP) and Washington Water Power Co. (WWP).

Maine PUC Hikes Electric Price Cap

Phillip S. Cross

The Maine Public Utilities Commission (PUC) has approved a 2.43 percent rate increase in the price cap for Central Maine Power Co. (CMP). It also issued findings governing the flow-through to ratepayers of savings earned by restructuring contracts with qualifying cogeneration facilities (QFs).

SDG&E Touts PoolCo, Opposes Forced Spinoffs

Lori A. Burkhart

San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) has filed comments to support the "majority proposal" by the California Public Utilities Commission on deregulating the electric utility industry, which calls for formation of a wholesale power pool.

SDG&E noted that while a key element of the proposal involved creating an independent system operator, the company would go further and set up a regional transmission company to own the grid.

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