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Mandatory Wheeling: Is the FERC Overstepping its Bounds?Donald B. Craven and Anthony F. Shelley

Fortnightly Magazine - October 15 1995

order the filing of open-access tariffs, it recognizes the likelihood of a substantial challenge by others, and that the Commission's interpretation of its authority under FPA section 206 arguably is impermissibly overbroad. Were that to be successfully demonstrated, the legal underpinnings for the NOPR would be done. Excepted (footnotes omitted) from: Comments of Southern California Edison Company on Notice of Proposed Rulemaking and Supplemental Notice of Proposed Rulemaking. FERC Dkts. RM95-8-000, RM94-7-001, dated Aug. 4, 1995. Filed by Ann P. Cohn, Christa Piantadosi, and Jennifer L. Key, attorneys for Southern California Edison Co.

1. Promoting Wholesale Competition Through Open-Access Non-Discriminatory Trans. Servs. By Pub. Utils., Dkt. RM95-8-000, and Recovery of Stranded Costs by Pub. Utils. and Transmitting Utils., Dkt. RM94-7-001, March 29, 1995, 70 FERC (pp 61,357, 60 Fed.Reg. 17662, 17675 (April 7, 1995).

2. NOPR, 60 Fed.Reg. at 17675.

3. Id., at 17676.

4. Id., at 17682.

5. 410 U.S. 366 (1973).

6. Id., at 374.

7. See, e.g., Florida P&L Co. v. FERC, 660 F.2d 668 (5th Cir.1981), cert. denied, 459 U.S. 1156 (1983) (no authority despite utility's prior wheeling contracts); Cent. Iowa Pwr. Co-op. v. FERC, 606 F.2d 1156 (D.C.Cir.1979), and NY State Elec. & Gas Corp. v. FERC, 638 F.2d 388 (2d Cir.1980), cert. denied, 454 U.S. 821 (1981) (FERC cannot expand voluntary pooling agreement to nongenerating electric systems); and Richmond P&L v. FERC, 574 F.2d 610 (D.C.Cir.1978) (no general power to mandate wheeling to alleviate energy crisis).

8. 16 U.S.C.A. secs. 824j(a), 824k(c)(1) (West Supp.1995).

9. 16 U.S.C.A. sec. 824j(b) (West Supp.1995).

10. 16 U.S.C.A. sec. 824(h)(1) (West Supp.1995).

11. U.S.C.A. sec. 824(h)(2) (West Supp.1995).

12. NOPR, 60 Fed.Reg. at 17668.

13. See, Florida P&L v. FERC, supra, note 7 (questioning whether the FERC can compel wheeling to remedy findings of anticompetitive activities or antitrust violations).

14. See, Richmond P&L Co. v. FERC, supra, note 7.

15. H.R. Rep. No. 474 (Part I), 102d Cong., 2d Sess. 139 (1992), reprinted in 1992 U.S. Code Cong. & Admin. News 1953, 1962.

16. 824 F.2d 981 (D.C.Cir.1987), cert. denied, 485 U.S. 1006 (1988).

17. NOPR, 60 Fed.Reg. at 17668.

18. AGD, 824 F.2d at 998.

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