In two recent actions concerning natural gas marketers and brokers, the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) has proposed new policy to define its authority over marketing by the state's local distribution companies (LDCs) and their affiliates, plus a new rule requiring LDCs to set tariffed guidelines to ensure that marketers and brokers possess the financial and technical fitness necessary "to meet their contractual obligations" in transporting gas through LDC systems.
It stressed that it would not permit unreasonable discrimination in retail offerings (em whether by the LDC's marketing division, or by a formally organized marketing affiliate. Nevertheless, it said it would not require LDCs to form separate marketing subsidiaries, as long as the parent company "fairly allocates" costs to its marketing division and does not give it any unfair advantage. Re Policy Statement Regarding Affiliated Interest Issues of Natural Gas Marketers, M-00960838, Oct. 3, 1996 (Pa.P.U.C.); Re Policy Statement Addressing Fitness of Natural Gas Marketers, M-00960839, Oct. 3, 1996 (Pa.P.U.C.). t
Phillip S. Cross is an associate legal editor of PUBLIC UTILITIES FORTNIGHTLY.
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