Sound bites from state and federal regulators.
Gas Supply Affiliates. Arkansas oks plan by Arkla to continue to rely on NorAm Gas Transmission Co. (an affiliate) for the bulk of its supply requirements, but directs the utility to evaluate its supply options and to "be prepared" to shift to an independent supplier for gas inventory and capacity. NorAm agreed to "rachet-down" its price to meet third-party offers. Docket No. 95-401-U, Order No. 34, Jan. 9, 1997 (Ark.P.S.C.).
Electronic Billing. Michigan regulators approve program by Consumers Power Co. allowing customers to choose electronic billing containing the same information as conventional paper bills. PSC says program is consistent with existing rules governing delivery and content of monthly billing statements. Case No. U-11253, Feb. 5, 1997 (Mi.P.S.C.).
Gas Industry Restructuring. Oklahoma will develop rules for a "comprehensive and integrated restructuring plan" for the state's natural gas industry to introduce "fair" competition. The state would propose rules on rate and service unbundling, open-access transportation and distribution service, and consumer protection measures. Case No. RM 97000009, Feb. 18, 1997 (Okla.C.C.).
Gross Receipts Taxes. District of Columbia allows Washington Gas Light Co. to restructure nonresidential service rates and report gross receipts taxes as a separate line item on each bill. The change is seen as helping customers evaluate the cost of gas, a result consistent with federal efforts to boost gas competition. Order No. 10918, Jan. 31, 1997 (D.C.P.S.C.).
Gas Supply Planning. Washington state oks a 1995 integrated resource plan for Northwest Natural Gas Co., noting that the plan had helped the company to come "very close" to achieving a balance between current resources and expected demand, and to demonstrate expansion in storage capacity as its least-cost resource option. But regulators questioned the company's capacity reserve and its reliance on a lost-margin recovery mechanism to support its conservation efforts. Docket No. UG-960498, Jan. 16, 1997 (Wash.U.T.C.).
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