Sound bites from state and federal regulators. Gas Load Building. Finding no protest from electric utilities, North Carolina waives requirements for preliminary cost-benefit analysis and approves incentive programs for Piedmont Natural Gas Co. Inc., designed to boots gas load by installing commercial gas cooking equipment at community colleges for use in culinary degree programs. Commission tells company to conduct a cost-effectiveness analysis as soon as it can gather the necessary data from actual operating experience. Docket No. G-9, Sub 377, Jan. 31, 1997 (N.C.U.C.).
Federal Communications Commission
Hardly at all. In fact, they do little more than reapportion income (em a task that lies outside the FCC's mandate.
The Federal-State Joint Board on Universal Service recently proposed to expand subsidy programs for Lifeline telephone service. Under the Telecommunications Act of 1996, the Joint Board seeks to add more low-income households to the telephone network.
Will such a strategy work? Our recent findings suggest not. They indicate that simple continuance of such programs, much less expansion, is a highly questionable proposition.
A federal court blocks FCC's "TELRIC" cost rule, but some states endorse it anyway.
With the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) having lost a major court battle last fall, the state public utility commission (PUCs) have taken the lead in the deregulation of local telephone service promised a year ago when President Bill Clinton signed the Telecommunications Act of 1996 (the "Act").
Some states have opened generic investigations; others have chosen to proceed case-by-case in individual arbitration proceedings.
Which matters most: Cost? Price? Sales? Regulation?
Many investors no longer think of electric utility stocks primarily as dividend-rich, income-oriented investments. Instead, they have begun to consider new criteria in evaluating utility stocks (em criteria that might help explain some of the variations in equity price performance now seen among various utility companies.
Peter R. Thomas was hired from Sprint as v.p. of American Electric Power's new communications subsidiary, AEP Communications, Inc.
Central Illinois Light Co. hired Todd Severson as human resources v.p. He comes from Remco, a subsidiary of Thorn Americas.
Scott A. Neitzel, a member of the Wisconsin Public Service Commission since January 1992, has resigned. Neitzel chaired the PSC's electric utility industry restructuring committee.
Ohio Edison Co.'s board of directors elected chairman and CEO Willard R. Holland as its chairman.
Ever since word hit the street last July that Portland General Electric Co. (PGE) would merge with gas industry giant Enron, the news has been rather one-sided. It's been "Enron this" and "Enron that." From reading the papers one might think Enron, with its strong reputation as a commodities trader, was buying an entire electric utility simply to take a bigger position on the NYMEX futures market.
Once burned, but twice eager, utilities reprise their 1980s-era strategy, this time in the telephone business.
"It's not like they're going to open a pharmacy. It is directly related in some way, or at least arguably."
Earlier this year, 15 utilities grabbed the brass ring: a full-blown chance to enter the telecom business.
Sound bites from state and federal regulators.
Telco Interconnection Rules. Federal appeals court enjoins pricing aspect of rules published August 8 by the Federal Communications Commission to govern sale at wholesale of local exchange service elements by Bell system local carriers to new competitors (who would resell such elements to provide competitive local telephone services). Finds possibility of irreparable harm plus likelihood that Bell carriers might prevail on the merits of jurisdictional issues. No. 96-3406, Oct. 15, 1996 (8th Cir.).
Georgia Commissioner Stan Wise says he is very unhappy with the decision by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to require states to deaverage the cost of providing telephone service for companies that want to compete with the regional Bell operating carriers, such as BellSouth.
(The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit enjoined some aspects of the FCC rules on October 15. See, Courts and Commission, In Brief, p.
In August, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) issued rules to show how new competitors can enter the local markets for telecommunications (em forever relegating local telephone monopolies to that switchboard in the sky.