Friday, December 21, 2007

NYC Bar Association Energy Committee Recommends New State Energy Planning Board

The Energy Committee of the Association of the Bar of the City of New York has issued a Report on Energy Planning, urging state policy makers to take a more proactive role in planning for future energy needs. The Report has a useful history of the state's prior energy planning, done under a now lapsed statute, and does not urge replication of the former planning structure of the now defunct state energy office. In reality, major stakeholders are always planning. What is lacking today in New York is transparency, coordination, and accountability of energy planners to consumers and to the public at large.

Over the past decade, New York state abandoned formal energy planning in the hope that reliance on deregulation and market forces would meet growing electricity needs at lower cost in an environmentally acceptable manner. Depending on one's perspective, this was either a big mistake or a bad idea. Although some persist in confidence that unregulated markets will meet future needs, when the rubber hits the road and new power plants must be built, the merchant power sector generally has not met the need and it has been necessary for publicly owned utilities (NYPA and LIPA) or the old distribution companies (Con Edison) to address the need:
In metropolitan New York City, merchant power producers have not built new capacity to meet the growing load. For example, in metropolitan New York City, most recently-completed capacity (86 percent or 1,700 MW) was built by the New York Power Authority, Consolidated Edison Company of New York, Inc., or under contract to them. Generators and load serving entities are taking significantly different positions in an investigation of New York City’s generating capacity markets before the FERC about the ability of merchant suppliers to build new energy supply facilities. Some merchant generators consider that the revenue available through the NYISO’s current markets is inadequate to support investment in new generating capacity and that future capacity markets are unpredictable and unreliable.
The Report recognizes weaknesses in the NYISO planning, which only addresses reliability needs and not attainment of affordable prices or environmental goals. When "the market" fails to produce needed facilities, the NYISO "plan" ultimately punts to the old utilities to meet their duty to serve (eschewed by the NYISO and merchant power utilites) by undertaking regulatory backstop solutions to satisfy reliability criteria. This has meant either building their own plants or entering into long term contracts to buy the output from a new plant to be owned by others. Thus, commitments are made for which utility consumers must pay in the future in order to finance new "competitive" plants.

The Report recommends creation of a new Energy Planning Board comprised of state agency heads. Its members would include the PSC Chairman, the Commissioner of the Department of Environmental Conservation, Chairman of the Empire State Development Corporation, Chairman of NYSERDA. The NYISO would have an important advisory role:
The Energy Policy Board would include the chairs of the Commission, the DEC, the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (“NYSERDA”) and the Empire State Development Corporation. The Board would prepare a biennial statement of State energy policy recommendations, addressing the (1) risks, benefits and uncertainties of energy supply sources, (2) emerging energy trends, (3) energy policies and long-range planning objectives and strategies, (4) administrative and legislative actions needed to implement energy plans and objectives and (5) impact of the energy policy statement’s recommendations on economic development. The energy policy statement would provide the framework for coordinated actions and decisions by State agencies.
The proposed new board could foster coordination of Executive Branch agencies, but it leaves out any role for legislative leaders. In the current vacuum of energy planning, and the continued suctioning of wealth from New York City consumers to merchant power providers who may have an interest in sustaining scarcity there, New York City stepped up to the plate recently and proposed its own, highly proactive, energy plan. Unlike the Energy Committee Report, which seems careful not to trouble proponents of deregulation, the New York City Energy Plan issued earlier this year minces no words:
New Yorkers face rising energy costs and carbon emissions from an ineffective market, aging infrastructure, inefficient buildings, and growing needs. That’s why we must make smart investments in clean power and energy-saving technologies to reduce our electricity and heating bills by billions of dollars, while slashing our greenhouse gas emissions by nearly 27 million metric tons every year.
The ABCNY Energy Committee Report certainly points in the right direction toward a better planning process, and in many respects it is a breath of fresh air. But leaving out major players like legislative leaders, NYPA, LIPA, the City of New York, and distribution utilities who have the duty to serve, and relegating them to a role of commenting on draft plans of the proposed board, may not yet be a full solution to the energy planning needs of the state.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Public Power, Industrial and Residential Consumer Groups Demand FERC Review of Organized Spot Markets

A longtime proponent of competitive markets, the American Public Power Association (APPA) is concerned that organized markets allowed by FERC to set wholesale rates privately with little or no oversight are not functioning to yield the "just and reasonable rates" the Federal Power Act requires to protect consumers. Because APPA members are publicly owned utilities, APPA has a heightened concern about excessive wholesale rates being passed through to their members retail customers and has undertaken a reform initiative.

On December 17, 2007, APPA and forty other organizations, including NASUCA, PULP, Public Citizen, other utility consumer advocates, and groups representing large industrial customers joined in a motion to FERC in a proceeding involving all the organized spot markets to scrutinize whether those markets are properly designed, and whether the market rates they establish are just and reasonable.

FERC had sought public comment on just four organized spot market issues:
  • the role of demand response
  • long-term power contracting
  • market monitoring, and
  • responsiveness of RTOs and ISOs
The motion supported the limited FERC initiative, but argued that the limited initiatives are inadequate to address systemic failure of the spot markets to yield reasonable rates, making
  • Electricity consumers of all stripes recognize that the problems in the organized markets run much deeper than the current investigation is probing
  • FERC needs to broaden the scope of its proposed investigation to address the core issue of whether the private spot markets are producing unjust and unreasonable wholesale power prices
  • Certain large utilities in RTO regions are earning supra-competitive profits far in excess of returns on investments in other enterprises having corresponding risks
  • Rates consumers pay in the functionally deregulated regions where the private spot markets are setting wholesale rates are consistently higher than rates in traditionally regulated areas and are increasing faster
  • Price increases in prices in organized spot market areas are only partially due to increases in fuel prices
  • Other non-cost-of-service related factors, including the exercise of market power, also play a significant role in higher rates of organized spot markets
  • High prices and high rates of return have not attracted new investment and supply in the regions with private spot markets
The pleading asserts that FERC's reliance on privately set rates in organized markets is based on presumed conditions that are "at variance with reality." These unwarranted assumptions include
  • the absence of significant market power
  • the existence of free entry to and exit from the market by suppliers in response to "price signals"
  • the existence of an optimized resource mix to assure inframarginal revenues earned by generators are just and reasonable
  • the absence of impediments to long-term contracting, and
  • price-responsive demand, short-term substitution alternatives, and demand elasticity
The motion to FERC concludes
If the Commission’s investigation reveals unjust or unreasonable rates, contracts, or practices, it must take action to address them. Chairman Kelliher has pointed out that, in such circumstances, declining or failing to act simply is not an option that is lawfully available to the Commission. He has stated, quite correctly, that “[t]he legal duty of the Commission to prevent unjust and unreasonable rates and undue discrimination or preference in the sale of wholesale power or interstate transmission by jurisdictional sellers is absolute; the Commission does not have the discretion to ignore them.” The Undersigned Parties therefore urge the Commission to investigate this issue, to fulfill its statutory obligation.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Cornell Professor Gives Low Marks to NYISO Electricity Markets

In a September 2007 report prepared for the American Public Power Association (APPA) as part of its electricity market reform initiative, Cornell Professor Timothy Mount identifies numerous weaknesses in the wholesale electricity markets operated by the New York Independent System Operator (NYISO):

An important difference between regulated and deregulated generation is that the revenues received by generators in a regulated market are tied to actual costs. In a deregulated market, a large part of the net revenue earned above the operating costs is fungible and does not necessarily go toward the capital costs of generating capacity in a particular region. In a regulated market, customers know what they are paying for. This is no longer the case in a deregulated market and a sizable portion of the bill a customer pays for generation may, in fact, be transferred to another region or another country or another industry within the structure of a given holding company. Given the complexity and the rapid changes of the structure of many companies that now own power plants, it is extremely difficult to determine exactly where this money goes.

Of particular concern is the lack of the NYISO capacity markets to stimulate merchant power companies to build new power plants:

Hundreds of millions of dollars are being paid through the capacity market to the owners of installed generating capacity to supplement their earnings in the wholesale market. The main accomplishment of these extra payments is to increase the market value of existing generating capacity. There is no obligation placed on generators to build new capacity when and where it is needed. The NERC report on reliability discussed earlier shows that projected capacity margins above the peak loads are falling in all deregulated regions. Delays by investors in their commitment to build new generating capacity are developing into a serious national problem. The overall conclusion is that the current performance of deregulated electricity markets is poor in terms of ensuring that there is enough installed generating capacity to meet projected loads reliably. This is true even though substantial payments have been made to generators through capacity markets to supplement their earnings in the wholesale market.

As a result of the reliance on market forces, the spare capacity needed to maintain reliable service is shrinking:

In the 2004 report, the forecasted reserve margin was always above the 18% needed to meet the reliability standard up to the end of the forecast period in 2013. However, in the 2005 report and the 2006 report, the forecasted reserve margins fall below the 18% standard by 2008.

The reason for the recent drop in the forecasted reserve margins is that there have been delays in the construction of new generating units even though they have been issued construction licenses. The lists of new generating units are essentially the same in the different reports, but the proposed in-service dates are quite different. In 2004, nine generating projects, with a total capacity of 2,038 MW, were under construction. This was two-thirds of the total of 3,120 MW approved. Another 1,605 MW had applications pending. In 2005, the amount of capacity under construction was still 2,038 MW, but none of the other projects had proposed in-service dates. The important implication is that it is no longer realistic in a typical deregulated market to assume that a generating unit will be built after regulators have approved a license for construction. This was typically not the case under regulation. In a deregulated market, merchant generators have no obligation to complete projects if the prospects for recovering capital costs deteriorate during the construction process.

The problem is most acute in the New York City area:

Given the age and low ACF of many existing generating units in NYC, some of these units are scheduled for retirement in the near future. Combining this situation with the current reluctance of investors to build new generating capacity33, the most important region to consider at this time is the LICAP market in NYC. The basic questions are: 1) how much money is paid to generators in NYC, and 2) is this amount enough to finance the investment needed to maintain generation adequacy? The answers imply that the LICAP market in NYC is an example of how a capacity market can be expensive for customers and still not provide an effective way to maintain generation adequacy. This is true even though the state regulators designed the LICAP market specifically to deal with the issue of generation adequacy.

While claiming to rely on market forces, New York has relied on stop gap measures, and called upon publicly owned utilities and Con Edison to effectuate construction of most of the new power plants built in the past decade:

[T]he larger incumbent firms can exploit the LICAP market given the pattern of ownership of generating capacity in NYC. In spite of the fact that the cost of the LICAP market is very high, investors have not stepped forward to build new generating capacity and in 2006 the regulators had to resort to ad hoc ways to meet reliability standards for 2008 in NYC.
The amount already wasted on capacity payments to existing power plant owners to induce a market response totals billions of dollars, and would have been enough to build the needed new power plants:

Even though steps have been taken to deal with the projected shortfall, this does not change the overall conclusion that the LICAP market has been an expensive and an ineffective way to maintain generation adequacy. In 2005 and 2006, customers paid over $1 billion/year in the LICAP market in NYC and merchant investors were still reluctant to commit to specific in-service dates for new generating units that have already received licenses for construction. This amount of money is enough to finance over 12,000 MW of new peaking capacity at a capital cost of $80/kW/Year (from Table A1 in the Appendix), and this amount of additional capacity would more than double the installed generating capacity in NYC.

At this point, it is likely that New York City or state agencies will need to be more proactive before it is too late and reliability is sacrificed. In 1996, when it envisioned the current system of market reliance, the PSC refused an effort of Enron to reduce the reliability reserve margin, saying reliability is paramount. Last year, the PSC lowered the capacity reserve margin deemed necessary for reliability from 18% to 16.5%. This reduction had the effect of extending the time limit for construction of new plants needed to maintain reliability. The PSC reduction was made on the recommendation of the New York Reliability Council, after a divided vote with several members voting against the reduction.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Electricity Consumer Advocates Seek Supreme Court Review of FERC Market Rate Orders

Several years ago, after manipulation of market-based rates for wholesale electricity was exposed, FERC took action to ban certain manipulative practices used by Enron and others to create artificial scarcity and drive prices up. FERC commenced a proceeding under Section 206 of the Federal Power Act, declaring all market rate tariffs to be unjust and unreasonable, and then proposed to "fix" them by adding certain conditions intended to discourage price manipulation.

A number of consumer advocates intervened in the case, contending that FERC's "fixes" were not sufficient to bring the tariffs into compliance with longstanding Federal Power Act requirements. They contend that the law requires all rates to be filed publicly in advance, before they take effect, and that FERC lacks authority to dispense with the statutory filing requirement by allowing sellers to make secret rate changes and to disclose actual rates only after they have been implemented and charged. Also, they argue that FERC has no objective yardstick by which to measure whether a market rate is just and reasonable. Also, see Consumer Groups Question FERC Market Rates, and Consumer Challenge to FERC "Market-Based Rate" System Proceeds. See also, May the FERC Rely on Markets to Set Electric Rates?.

The Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia affirmed FERC's orders. See FERC Escapes Court Review of its Legal Authority for its Electricity Market Rate Regime. The advocates moved for rehearing. See Consumer Advocates Seek Rehearing of D.C. Circuit Court Decision Allowing FERC to Avoid Consideration of Statutory Filing Requirements. The motion for rehearing was denied.

In late November 2007 the consumer advocates, including PULP, filed a petition for certiorari, asking the Supreme Court to hear the case. In October 2007 the Supreme Court granted review in another case involving remedies for unjust and unreasonable market rates. See U.S. Supreme Court to Decide Electricity Market Rate Refund Case.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

FCC Denies Verizon Request for Deregulation in Six Major Areas Including Metropolitan New York

In the early 1990's, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) attempted to deregulate providers of telecom services under its jurisdiction who were not dominant in the market, i.e., they lacked market power. Under the agency's own deregulatory initiatives, the FCC "detariffed" long distance service providers like MCI, while continuing to regulate the dominant provider, AT&T.

In a court challenge to the agency's claim of power to deregulate providers who lack market power, the Supreme Court held that for better or worse, the statutes written by congress had created a filed rate regulation system that did not give the agency power to modify filing requirements by abolishing them. See MCI v. AT&T. This Supreme Court reminder that only Congress can change statutory rate filing requirements added pressure on Congress to revise the basic laws under which interstate telecom services are provided and regulated.

In 1996, a new regulatory platform was created by Congress when it enacted the Telecommunications Act of 1996. In addition to spelling out criteria and procedures for the FCC to follow before deregulating services, the new law added important new universal service initiatives, such as mandating Lifeline and Linkup services (which previously depended on state initiatives), and providing for broadband access to schools and libraries.

The Telecommunications Act of 1996 requires the FCC to "forbear" from enforcement of statutes and regulations if it determines that the regulation is not needed to protect consumers or to ensure just and reasonable rates and practices by carriers. This reflects the dubious assumption that a competitive market necessarily produces reasonable rates. In an extremely unusual provision, if a telecom company files a "forbearance petition" the 1996 Telecom Act requires the FCC to determine whether forbearance will promote competitive markets and is in the public interest. Unless the Commission responds to petitions for forbearance within one year – a deadline which can be extended by only 90 days – the relief sought by the utility is "deemed granted" by operation of law. Thus, without any action by congress or the regulatory agency, a telecom utility is allowed to trigger its own deregulation and to achieve that if its forbearance petition is not rejected by the FCC within the statutory period .

In 2006, Verizon filed petitions for regulatory forbearance in six large metropolitan areas, including New York, the nation's largest area. With forbearance, Verizon rates under FCC jurisdiction would have been deregulated, and rate increases could take effect without adequate public notice or any opportunity for prior agency review for reasonableness.

Consumer groups, including the National Association of State Utility Consumer Advocates (NASUCA) and PULP, opposed the request for deregulation, filed initial comments objecting to Verizon's request for regulatory forbearance, arguing that the competition tests had not been met, and filed reply comments in response to Verizon's answering papers.

On November 2007, the FCC rejected Verizon's request. According to the FCC Press Release, "The Commission found that the current evidence of competition does not satisfy the
section 10 forbearance standard with respect to any of the forbearance Verizon requests.
Accordingly, the Commission denied the requested relief in all six MSAs." In a subsequent order, the FCC detailed its reasons for rejecting the Verizon request for deregulation.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Lawsuit Involving Death of Velma Fordham Settled by National Fuel

The Public Service Commission (PSC) Penalty Proceeding
In September 2001, the New York PSC issued an order to show cause why National Fuel Gas Distribution Company should not face a penalty arising from the denial of service to a customer, Velma Fordham, who later was discovered dead in her unheated apartment, and found by the Medical Examiner to have died from hypothermia. The potential fines from several alleged violations of the Home Energy Fair Practices Act (HEFPA) were $19 million. NFG denied having violated any HEFPA requirements. PULP intervened in the case and participated in discovery.

Eventually, after Staff filed a scoping statement with detailed allegations outlining its intended proof at hearing, a proposed settlement agreement was reached between DPS Staff and NFG.

Under the agreement, no penalties were imposed. National Fuel agreed only to add $1.5 million to a program designed to aid low income customers, and to fund an audit of its practices regarding the Home Energy Assistance Program.

PULP did not join in the settlement. PULP also objected to a lack of transparency regarding the proposed settlement, because the PSC had required any comments on the settlement proposal to be non public.

The proposed settlement was approved by the PSC in 2004, more than three years after Ms. Fordham's death.

Buffalo Judge Makowski Dismisses the Private Tort Action for Wrongful Death
In 2006, a wrongful death action on behalf of Velma Fordham's estate was dismissed by Buffalo Judge Joseph G. Makowski as having been brought too late. His decision apparently was influenced by testimony of Michael Baden, hired as a forensic expert by National Fuel, who estimated the time of Ms. Fordham's death to have been more than two years prior to commencement of the lawsuit. The lawsuit was brought within two years of the date of death reported by the Erie County Medical Examiner.

The Appellate Division Reinstates the Action, Underscoring The Public Interest in HEFPA Compliance
In an April, 2007 decision, the Appellate Division, Fourth Department reversed Judge Makowski's decision, and reinstated the case. The court said "the testimony of the Chief Medical Examiner undercuts both the credibility of National Fuel's expert (Michael Baden) and the substance of his opinion with respect to the date of death."

More importantly, moving on to discuss the plaintiff's claims, the Appellate Division rendered a major decision regarding the effect of HEFPA violations.

The appellate court found sufficient evidence of negligence on the part of NFG for having violated Ms. Fordham's rights to service under the Home Energy Fair Practices Act (HEFPA), Article 2 of the New York Public Service Law:
The evidence supports plaintiff's allegations that National Fuel was negligent based on the violation of its obligations under the Public Service Law, the corresponding regulations, and its own procedures by denying the application of decedent for continuing service at her new residence (see § 31 [3]; 16 NYCRR 11.3 [a] [5]), and based on its failure to initiate service within five days of decedent's original request for gas service or within a reasonable period thereafter, allowing for delays occasioned by the snow storm (see Public Service Law § 31 [5]; 16 NYCRR 11.3 [a] [4]). The Legislature has recognized that discharging those obligations in the provision of residential gas service "is necessary for the preservation of the health and general welfare and is in the public interest" (Public Service Law § 30; see 16 NYCRR 11.1).
The court rejected National Fuel's defense that Ms. Fordham should have done more to get additional welfare assistance. (Ms. Fordham had obtained an Emergency HEAP payment of $700 which was rejected by National Fuel as insufficient).

Punitive Damages Claim Allowed for HEFPA Violations
The court also reinstated claims for punitive damages, to be determined by a jury, stating:
Here, there is evidence that National Fuel failed to discharge its obligation to decedent under the Public Service Law and its own procedures by failing to respond in a timely manner to her original request for gas service. In addition, National Fuel's CBR erroneously treated decedent as a new customer rather than a continuing customer and led her to believe that the activation of her gas service was contingent upon her satisfaction of a 1997 judgment or qualification for direct payment by DSS. Those errors were given the apparent endorsement of a supervisor . . . . The alleged conduct of National Fuel implicates public health and safety concerns . . . as well as the policies permitting awards for punitive damages. Such awards "are intended as punishment for gross misbehavior for the good of the public and have been referred to as a sort of hybrid between a display of ethical indignation and the imposition of a criminal fine . . . . Punitive damages are allowed on the ground of public policy and not because the plaintiff has suffered any monetary damages for which [s]he is entitled to reimbursement . . . . The damages may be considered expressive of the community attitude towards one who wilfully and wantonly causes hurt or injury to another. . . . dismissal of plaintiff's claim for punitive damages is premature, and the issue whether the actions of National Fuel warrant the imposition of punitive damages should be determined at trial.
Reversal of Judge Makowski's Sealing Order
Finally, in a sharp rebuke to Buffalo trial court judge Joseph G. Makowski, the Appellate Division reversed his sua sponte order sealing all the records of the case from public disclosure, including his own decision dismissing the case, stating:
Plaintiff contends that the court erred in sua sponte directing that its decision and the moving papers upon which it is based be filed under seal. Here, the court made no finding of good cause, as required by the regulation.... Further, apart from the regulation, "[t]he right of access to . . . court records is also firmly grounded in common-law principles" . . . . Courts should be reluctant to seal court records even when all of the parties to the litigation have requested such sealing . . . and we perceive no legitimate basis for sealing any part of the record here . . . . To the contrary, this action raises serious issues of legitimate public concern, and "[t]he public interest in openness is particularly important on matters of public concern, even if the issues arise in the context of a private dispute" . . . . We therefore conclude that the sealing directive should be vacated.
Previously, Judge Makowski,without notice, made an ex parte order purporting to gag the Attorney General's office and PULP from discussing or disclosing papers filed in the PSC penalty case. Makowski at the request of NFG issued subpoenaes in a pre litigation discovery order, in anticipation of the wrongful death action that had not yet been filed. The Attorney General submitted to jurisdiction of the court and then later made a motion to relax Makowski's gag order, because the bulk of the papers filed at the PSC did not involve the subpoenaed papers which Makowsi had sealed in the judicial discovery proceeding. Judge Makowski did not timely decide the Attorney General's motion. When some of the papers sealed by Makowski were included in NFG's multi-volume filings at the PSC in response to the PSC Order to Show Cause, NFG argued that their entire response could not be made public and could not be provided to PULP. A PSC Administrative Law Judge eventually ruled that nearly all the papers filed by NFG in the PSC case, excepting for a few autopsy photographs, are publicly available documents under the Freedom of Information Law.

Confidential Settlement of the Wrongful Death Action
According to a 10-k report filed by NFG with the SEC on November 29, 2007, the wrongful death and punitive damages claims were scheduled for trial beginning in October, 2007, but then, more than six years after Velma Fordham's death, a settlement was reached.

The amount of the settlement is not known. According to a Buffalo News article, the terms of the settlement apparently are being kept confidential by agreement of parties to the litigation.

Importance of the Case
Despite National Fuel's steadfast insistence it did no wrong, the death of Velma Fordham, and the Appellate Division decision recognizing claims for damages, including punitive damages, arising from utility denial of HEFPA rights is significant judicial recognition of the potential life and death consequences of a lack of utility service. The Appellate Division decision constitutes a fitting postscript to this extremely sad matter involving the loss of a life, one which stands in contrast to lax PSC administrative enforcement of HEFPA and a lack of effective administrative sanctions for HEFPA violations. In the end, it was necessary for private litigants and their counsel to vindicate consumer rights under HEFPA.

For more papers in the case, see PULP's webpage on the death of Velma Fordham.

PULP Replies to National Grid's "Grand Plan" Defense

National Grid has been demanding that applicants for utility service pay 100% of bills for old, closed accounts, or $1,000 if the amount owed exceeds $1,000, if, during the prior period of service the customer had defaulted on a deferred payment agreement (DPA). See New Barrier to Utility Service: National Grid's "One Grand Demand".

The "Grand Plan" results in denial or lengthy delays in service and considerable hardship. The absence of safe utility service can be a matter of life or death, as illustrated by a recent, tragic Pennsylvania case. See Mom Sought Help Before Fatal Fire.

Applicants denied utility service due to the "Grand Plan" rule are challenging it in a Petition Seeking Interim Relief and a Declaratory Ruling and Other Relief to the Public Service Commission filed October 16, 2007. See PSC Asked to Investigate Grid's "Grand Plan".

Petitioners argue that Section 31 of the Public Service Law requires National Grid to offer a DPA with a down payment of no more than half the balance due or the amount of three months'
service, whichever is less. Also, they argue that under Section 37, all payment agreements must be fair and equitable and based on the customer's financial situation.

All of the individuals who filed affidavits in support of the petition, from whom utility service ahd been withheld under the challenged rule, have now received service without paying the "One Grand Demand." National Grid continues to apply the rule to other persons who have not joined in the case.

Discovery in the case indicates that the "Grand Plan" was adopted by National Grid in 2004 without public notice and without filing revised tariffs. As a result, the rules were not subject to objection by consumer groups and there was no PSC order approving the new conditions for service before they were implemented.
On November 20, 2007, National Grid filed its response to the amended petition.

On November 30, 2007 PULP filed its reply for the petitioners.

For more information, see PULP's web page on the National Grid "Grand Plan."