Whether you're a utility commissioner in Wyoming or Georgia, a v.p. for a leading marketer, or a commission division director in New Jersey, you share a common activity: learning by the seat of your pants about deregulating gas markets. In this gas forum, PUBLIC UTILITIES FORTNIGHTLY highlights developments across the nation.
UtiliCorp United, Inc., a leader in noncore gas markets, plans to step into the residential market for the first time, and appears to have Maryland and Massachusetts in its sights.
Wyoming, meanwhile, is already considering changes to its recently launched residential natural gas pilot.
In New Jersey, taxes, among other issues, raised their head during noncore unbundling.
Georgia is taking another route. A failed attempt at a legislative solution to gas deregulation now pins hopes on consensus between utilities, marketers, industrials, and others. Hopefully, at least for those who plan to enter the residential market, Georgia will avoid the learning curve of Wyoming and New Jersey.
Competing on the Margin
UtiliCorp United, Inc. of Kansas City, MO, whose success signing natural gas contracts with McDonald's, Service Merchandise, and other chains put it on the gas retailing map, has dipped its toe into the residential gas market.
And what a market it is: About 55 million American homeowners use natural gas.
As a qualified gas supplier in Maryland and Massachusetts, the company's EnergyOne affiliate planned to compete for its share of the 16,000 customers up for grabs under separate pilot programs.