Archive for October 2008

Liberty Power to Pay $32,000 settlement

In a settlement agreement released on Oct. 17, 2008, it appears Liberty Power will pay a fine of $32,000 to settle a PUCT investigation.  Apparently, the PUCT believed Liberty had violated portions of §25.475 which requires all printed advertisements distributed by Retail Electricity Providers (REPs) to include the REP’s certificated name and number, and Electricity Facts Label (EFL) or instructions on how to obtain more information, and that the advertisements shall not be fraudulent, unfair, misleading, deceptive, or anticompetitive as prohibited by federal and state law.
 
PUCT Staff had investigated LPT for non-compliance with §25.475, due to the receipt of a printed advertisement in the form of a facsimile transmission distributed by AEM Consulting (AEM), an entity that Staff determined was acting as an agent for LPT and other REPs. AEM and LPT previously had a contract for AEM to provide energy consulting services to business owners within the sales territory and business profile assigned by LPT. In the course of providing those services, AEM faxed an advertisement to 11,149 potential customers that did not comply with Substantive Rule 25.475.
 
As I have said before, it’s the little things that are black and white that can get you into trouble with the PUCT.

 

Emergency Rule Suspension Continued…

Commissioners extended the deposit waiver in response to hurricane Ike.  As a modification was made to the actual order language at the Open Meeting, final language is not yet available.
 
 
 

Reliant’s Up for Sale?

It appears Reliant has put itself up for sale…
 
 

Certification Rule Highlights

Highlights from the staff draft:
 
Financial Qualifications
Two tiered system:
  •     Tier 1:  investment grade credit rating or tangible net worth greater than or equal to $100 million
  •     Tier 2:  liquid capital of at least $3 million; or $2 million if in business more than 2 years but less than 3 and you have not been sanctioned (term undefined) or defaulted; $1 million in in business as a REP more than 3 years and you have not been sanctioned (term undefined) or defaulted
One year for all REPs to come into compliance with new standards
 
Protection of Customer Deposits and Advance Payments
Tier 1:  keep deposits in a restricted cash account or an escrow account or provide an irrevocable standby-by letter of credit in an amount sufficient to cover 100% of the REP’s outstanding customer deposits or advance payments at all times.
 
Tier 2:  keep deposits in an escrow account or provide an irrevocable standee-by letter of credit in an amount sufficient to cover 100% of the REP’s outstanding customer deposits or advance payments at all times.
 
TDU Deposits
Tier 1:  no TDU deposits allowed except to ensure payment of transition charges
Tier 2:  allows deposits for payment of amounts billed.  TDU tariff to prescribe details of deposits.
 
Technical and Managerial Requirements
  • One principal or permanent employee with 5 years experience in commodity risk management of a substantial energy portfolio, or a contract for at least a 2 year term with a firm who has provided such services for at least 5 years.
 
 
Patricia Dolese
Regulatory Compliance Services
512-275-6442 (office)
512-656-3185 (mobile)
866-929-2860 (fax)
 

Staff Releases Draft Certification Rule for Publication

The staff released its draft rule for publication yesterday.  The draft rule will be discussed by the Commission at its next Open Meeting and if approved, will be published for comment, marking the beginning of the formal comment period.
 
 
Patricia Dolese
Regulatory Compliance Services
512-275-6442 (office)
512-656-3185 (mobile)
866-929-2860 (fax)