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MICHIGAN PUBLIC SERVICE COMMISSION (EXCERPT)
Act 3 of 1939
460.10a Alternative electric suppliers; orders establishing rates, terms, and conditions of service; licensing procedure; switching or billing for services without consent; code of conduct; appliance service program; self-service power; affiliate wheeling; rights of parties to existing contracts and agreements; receipt of standard tariff service; recovery of costs by electric utility offering retail open access service; definitions.
(1) The commission shall issue orders establishing the rates, terms, and conditions of service that allow all retail customers of an electric utility or provider to choose an alternative electric supplier. The orders shall do all of the following:
(a) Provide that no more than 10% of an electric utility's average weather-adjusted retail sales for the preceding calendar year may take service from an alternative electric supplier at any time.
(b) Set forth procedures necessary to administer and allocate the amount of load that will be allowed to be served by alternative electric suppliers, through the use of annual energy allotments awarded on a calendar year basis, and shall provide, among other things, that existing customers who are taking electric service from an alternative electric supplier at a facility on the effective date of the amendatory act that added this subdivision shall be given an allocated annual energy allotment for that service at that facility, that customers seeking to expand usage at a facility served through an alternative electric supplier will be given next priority, with the remaining available load, if any, allocated on a first-come first-served basis. The procedures shall also provide how customer facilities will be defined for the purpose of assigning the annual energy allotments to be allocated under this section. The commission shall not allocate additional annual energy allotments at any time when the total annual energy allotments for the utility's distribution service territory is greater than 10% of the utility's weather-adjusted retail sales in the calendar year preceding the date of allocation. If the sales of a utility are less in a subsequent year or if the energy usage of a customer receiving electric service from an alternative electric supplier exceeds its annual energy allotment for that facility, that customer shall not be forced to purchase electricity from a utility, but may purchase electricity from an alternative electric supplier for that facility during that calendar year.
(c) Notwithstanding any other provision of this section, customers seeking to expand usage at a facility that has been continuously served through an alternative electric supplier since April 1, 2008 shall be permitted to purchase electricity from an alternative electric supplier for both the existing and any expanded load at that facility as well as any new facility constructed or acquired after the effective date of the amendatory act that added this subdivision that is similar in nature if the customer owns more than 50% of the new facility.
(d) Notwithstanding any other provision of this section, any customer operating an iron ore mining facility, iron ore processing facility, or both, located in the Upper Peninsula of this state, shall be permitted to purchase all or any portion of its electricity from an alternative electric supplier, regardless of whether the sales exceed 10% of the serving electric utility's average weather-adjusted retail sales.
(2) The commission shall issue orders establishing a licensing procedure for all alternative electric suppliers. To ensure adequate service to customers in this state, the commission shall require that an alternative electric supplier maintain an office within this state, shall assure that an alternative electric supplier has the necessary financial, managerial, and technical capabilities, shall require that an alternative electric supplier maintain records which the commission considers necessary, and shall ensure an alternative electric supplier's accessibility to the commission, to consumers, and to electric utilities in this state. The commission also shall require alternative electric suppliers to agree that they will collect and remit to local units of government all applicable users, sales, and use taxes. An alternative electric supplier is not required to obtain any certificate, license, or authorization from the commission other than as required by this act.
(3) The commission shall issue orders to ensure that customers in this state are not switched to another supplier or billed for any services without the customer's consent.
(4) No later than December 2, 2000, the commission shall establish a code of conduct that shall apply to all electric utilities. The code of conduct shall include, but is not limited to, measures to prevent cross-subsidization, information sharing, and preferential treatment, between a utility's regulated and unregulated services, whether those services are provided by the utility or the utility's affiliated entities. The code of conduct established under this subsection shall also be applicable to electric utilities and alternative electric suppliers consistent with section 10, this section, and sections 10b through 10cc.
(5) An electric utility may offer its customers an appliance service program. Except as otherwise provided by this section, the utility shall comply with the code of conduct established by the commission under subsection (4). As used in this section, "appliance service program" or "program" means a subscription program for the repair and servicing of heating and cooling systems or other appliances.
(6) A utility offering a program under subsection (5) shall do all of the following:
(a) Locate within a separate department of the utility or affiliate within the utility's corporate structure the personnel responsible for the day-to-day management of the program.
(b) Maintain separate books and records for the program, access to which shall be made available to the commission upon request.
(c) Not promote or market the program through the use of utility billing inserts, printed messages on the utility's billing materials, or other promotional materials included with customers' utility bills.
(7) All costs directly attributable to an appliance service program allowed under subsection (5) shall be allocated to the program as required by this subsection. The direct and indirect costs of employees, vehicles, equipment, office space, and other facilities used in the appliance service program shall be allocated to the program based upon the amount of use by the program as compared to the total use of the employees, vehicles, equipment, office space, and other facilities. The cost of the program shall include administrative and general expense loading to be determined in the same manner as the utility determines administrative and general expense loading for all of the utility's regulated and unregulated activities. A subsidy by a utility does not exist if costs allocated as required by this subsection do not exceed the revenue of the program.
(8) A utility may include charges for its appliance service program on its monthly billings to its customers if the utility complies with all of the following requirements:
(a) All costs associated with the billing process, including the postage, envelopes, paper, and printing expenses, are allocated as required under subsection (7).
(b) A customer's regulated utility service is not terminated for nonpayment of the appliance service program portion of the bill.
(c) Unless the customer directs otherwise in writing, a partial payment by a customer is applied first to the bill for regulated service.
(9) In marketing its appliance service program to the public, a utility shall do all of the following:
(a) The list of customers receiving regulated service from the utility shall be available to a provider of appliance repair service upon request within 2 business days. The customer list shall be provided in the same electronic format as such information is provided to the appliance service program. A new customer shall be added to the customer list within 1 business day of the date the customer requested to turn on service.
(b) Appropriately allocate costs as required under subsection (7) when personnel employed at a utility's call center provide appliance service program marketing information to a prospective customer.
(c) Prior to enrolling a customer into the program, the utility shall inform the potential customer of all of the following:
(i) That appliance service programs may be available from another provider.
(ii) That the appliance service program is not regulated by the commission.
(iii) That a new customer shall have 10 days after enrollment to cancel his or her appliance service program contract without penalty.
(iv) That the customer's regulated rates and conditions of service provided by the utility are not affected by enrollment in the program or by the decision of the customer to use the services of another provider of appliance repair service.
(d) The utility name and logo may be used to market the appliance service program provided that the program is not marketed in conjunction with a regulated service. To the extent that a program utilizes the utility's name and logo in marketing the program, the program shall include language on all material indicating that the program is not regulated by the commission. Costs shall not be allocated to the program for the use of the utility's name or logo.
(10) This section does not prohibit the commission from requiring a utility to include revenues from an appliance service program in establishing base rates. If the commission includes the revenues of an appliance service program in determining a utility's base rates, the commission shall also include all of the costs of the program as determined under this section.
(11) Except as otherwise provided in this section, the code of conduct with respect to an appliance service program shall not require a utility to form a separate affiliate or division to operate an appliance service program, impose further restrictions on the sharing of employees, vehicles, equipment, office space, and other facilities, or require the utility to provide other providers of appliance repair service with access to utility employees, vehicles, equipment, office space, or other facilities.
(12) This act does not prohibit or limit the right of a person to obtain self-service power and does not impose a transition, implementation, exit fee, or any other similar charge on self-service power. A person using self-service power is not an electric supplier, electric utility, or a person conducting an electric utility business. As used in this subsection, "self-service power" means any of the following:
(a) Electricity generated and consumed at an industrial site or contiguous industrial site or single commercial establishment or single residence without the use of an electric utility's transmission and distribution system.
(b) Electricity generated primarily by the use of by-product fuels, including waste water solids, which electricity is consumed as part of a contiguous facility, with the use of an electric utility's transmission and distribution system, but only if the point or points of receipt of the power within the facility are not greater than 3 miles distant from the point of generation.
(c) A site or facility with load existing on June 5, 2000 that is divided by an inland body of water or by a public highway, road, or street but that otherwise meets this definition meets the contiguous requirement of this subdivision regardless of whether self-service power was being generated on June 5, 2000.
(d) A commercial or industrial facility or single residence that meets the requirements of subdivision (a) or (b) meets this definition whether or not the generation facility is owned by an entity different from the owner of the commercial or industrial site or single residence.
(13) This act does not prohibit or limit the right of a person to engage in affiliate wheeling and does not impose a transition, implementation, exit fee, or any other similar charge on a person engaged in affiliate wheeling. As used in this section:
(a) "Affiliate" means a person or entity that directly, or indirectly through 1 or more intermediates, controls, is controlled by, or is under common control with another specified entity. As used in this subdivision, "control" means, whether through an ownership, beneficial, contractual, or equitable interest, the possession, directly or indirectly, of the power to direct or to cause the direction of the management or policies of a person or entity or the ownership of at least 7% of an entity either directly or indirectly.
(b) "Affiliate wheeling" means a person's use of direct access service where an electric utility delivers electricity generated at a person's industrial site to that person or that person's affiliate at a location, or general aggregated locations, within this state that was either 1 of the following:
(i) For at least 90 days during the period from January 1, 1996 to October 1, 1999, supplied by self-service power, but only to the extent of the capacity reserved or load served by self-service power during the period.
(ii) Capable of being supplied by a person's cogeneration capacity within this state that has had since January 1, 1996 a rated capacity of 15 megawatts or less, was placed in service before December 31, 1975, and has been in continuous service since that date. A person engaging in affiliate wheeling is not an electric supplier, an electric utility, or conducting an electric utility business when a person engages in affiliate wheeling.
(14) The rights of parties to existing contracts and agreements in effect as of January 1, 2000 between electric utilities and qualifying facilities, including the right to have the charges recovered from the customers of an electric utility, or its successor, shall not be abrogated, increased, or diminished by this act, nor shall the receipt of any proceeds of the securitization bonds by an electric utility be a basis for any regulatory disallowance. Further, any securitization or financing order issued by the commission that relates to a qualifying facility's power purchase contract shall fully consider that qualifying facility's legal and financial interests.
(15) A customer who elects to receive service from an alternative electric supplier may subsequently provide notice to the electric utility of the customer's desire to receive standard tariff service from the electric utility. The procedures in place for each electric utility as of January 1, 2008 that set forth the terms pursuant to which a customer receiving service from an alternative electric supplier may return to full service from the electric utility are ratified and shall remain in effect and may be amended by the commission as needed. If an electric utility did not have the procedures in place as of January 1, 2008, the commission shall adopt those procedures.
(16) The commission shall authorize rates that will ensure that an electric utility that offered retail open access service from 2002 through the effective date of the amendatory act that added this subsection fully recovers its restructuring costs and any associated accrued regulatory assets. This includes, but is not limited to, implementation costs, stranded costs, and costs authorized pursuant to section 10d(4) as it existed prior to the effective date of the amendatory act that added this subsection, that have been authorized for recovery by the commission in orders issued prior to the effective date of the amendatory act that added this subsection. The commission shall approve surcharges that will ensure full recovery of all such costs within 5 years of the effective date of the amendatory act that added this subsection.
(17) As used in subsections (1) and (15):
(a) "Customer" means the building or facilities served through a single existing electric billing meter and does not mean the person, corporation, partnership, association, governmental body, or other entity owning or having possession of the building or facilities.
(b) "Standard tariff service" means, for each regulated electric utility, the retail rates, terms, and conditions of service approved by the commission for service to customers who do not elect to receive generation service from alternative electric suppliers.
History: Add. 2000, Act 141, Imd. Eff. June 5, 2000
Am. 2003, Act 214, Imd. Eff. Dec. 2, 2003
Am. 2004, Act 88, Imd. Eff. Apr. 22, 2004
Am. 2008, Act 286, Imd. Eff. Oct. 6, 2008
Popular Name: Customer Choice and Electricity Reliability Act
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