senate Bill S584A

Expands the scope of management and operations audits of gas and electric corporations conducted by the public service commission

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Bill Status


  • Introduced
  • In Committee
  • On Floor Calendar
    • Passed Senate
    • Passed Assembly
  • Delivered to Governor
  • Signed/Vetoed by Governor
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actions

  • 09 / Jan / 2013
    • REFERRED TO ENERGY AND TELECOMMUNICATIONS
  • 08 / Jan / 2014
    • REFERRED TO ENERGY AND TELECOMMUNICATIONS
  • 13 / Jan / 2014
    • AMEND AND RECOMMIT TO ENERGY AND TELECOMMUNICATIONS
  • 13 / Jan / 2014
    • PRINT NUMBER 584A

Summary

Expands the scope of management and operations audits of gas and electric corporations conducted by the public service commission; requires copies of such audits to be provided to the governor and various legislative leaders.

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Bill Details

See Assembly Version of this Bill:
A667A
Versions:
S584
S584A
Legislative Cycle:
2013-2014
Current Committee:
Senate Energy And Telecommunications
Law Section:
Public Service Law
Laws Affected:
Amd §66, Pub Serv L
Versions Introduced in Previous Legislative Cycles:
2011-2012: S1980, A2366
2009-2010: A1554, A1554
2007-2008: A8620A, A8620A

Sponsor Memo

BILL NUMBER:S584A

TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the public service law, in relation to
the management and operations audits of certain utilities

PURPOSE OR GENERAL IDEA OF BILL:

In its January 2007 report, the Assembly Queens power outage Task
Force recommended several measures to improve oversight of utilities
and prevent future blackouts. This bill strengthens the requirements
for management and operations audits of gas and electric corporations,
in order to ensure timely awareness of areas where improvements in
utility operations may be needed.

SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS:

Section one paragraphs (a) and (c) of subdivision 19 of § 66 of the
Public Service Law to make the following revisions to the statutorily
required process for management and operations audits of electric and
gas corporations:

*the audit schedule - currently at least once every 5 years - could be
accelerated by the Public Service Commission (PSC);
*audits would be expanded to include not only construction program
planning, but also "maintenance operations";
*upon completion, copies of audits must be provided to the Governor
and Legislature; and
* auditors shall independently verify information provided by the
utility. Section two provides the effective date.

EFFECTS OF PRESENT LAW WHICH THIS BILL WOULD ALTER:

This bill makes several augmentations to the current statutorily
required audit process, as detailed above.

JUSTIFICATION:

In the Summer of 2006, the western part of Queens suffered a massive
power outage that lasted 9 days. The Assembly Queens Power outage Task
Force studied the outage's causes and the inadequate responses by the
company responsible for the transmission and distribution system,
Consolidated Edison, and by the Public Service Commission. One
underlying cause of this debacle was found to be the reliance by New
York's utility regulators on antiquated laws, regulations and policies
that let companies engaged in energy transmission and distribution
operate without effective oversight.

The Task Force found that the legislatively-required schedule for PSC
audits of the management and operations of certain utilities was not
being met. This bill strengthens the current audit provisions by
including review of a utility's maintenance and security programs and
independent verification of information provided by the company,
allows the PSC to order audits more frequently than every 5 years, and
requires copies of completed audits to be filed with the Governor and
Legislature.

PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY:


2013:Senate Bill #584 (Gianaris)Died in Senate Energy
Telecommunications Committeein Senate Rules Committee
2012:Senate Bill #1980 (Gianaris)- Died in Assembly Corporations,
2013: Assembly Bill #667 (Hevesi)Authorities and Commissions Committee
2012: Assembly Bill #2366 (Hevesi)Died in Assembly Corporations,
Authorities and Commissions Committee
2010:Assembly Bill #1554 (Gianaris)Died in Assembly Corporations,
Authorities and Commissions Committee
2008:Assembly Bill #8620-A (Gianaris)-Died in Assembly Corporations,
Authorities and Commissions Committee

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS FOR STATE AND LOCAL GOVERNMENTS:

None.

EFFECTIVE DATE:

The 120th day after becoming law. Provided, that the Public Service
Commission is immediately authorized and directed to take any and all
actions, including but not limited to promulgation of any necessary
rules, necessary to fully implement the provisions of this act on its
effective date.

view bill text
                    S T A T E   O F   N E W   Y O R K
________________________________________________________________________

                                 584--A

                       2013-2014 Regular Sessions

                            I N  S E N A T E

                               (PREFILED)

                             January 9, 2013
                               ___________

Introduced  by Sen. GIANARIS -- read twice and ordered printed, and when
  printed to be committed to the Committee on  Energy  and  Telecommuni-
  cations  --  recommitted  to  the Committee on Energy and Telecommuni-
  cations in  accordance  with  Senate  Rule  6,  sec.  8  --  committee
  discharged, bill amended, ordered reprinted as amended and recommitted
  to said committee

AN  ACT  to  amend the public service law, in relation to the management
  and operations audits of certain utilities

  THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND  ASSEM-
BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:

  Section  1.  Paragraphs (a) and (c) of subdivision 19 of section 66 of
the public service law, as amended by section 4 of part X of chapter  57
of the laws of 2013, are amended to read as follows:
  (a)  The  commission  shall  have  power to provide for management and
operations audits of gas corporations and  electric  corporations.  Such
audits  shall be performed AT SUCH TIMES AS THE COMMISSION SHALL DIRECT,
BUT AN AUDIT SHALL BE PERFORMED at least once every  [five  years]  YEAR
for  combination  gas and electric corporations, as well as for straight
gas corporations having annual gross revenues in excess of  two  hundred
million dollars.  WHEN ANY SUCH CORPORATION ALSO OPERATES A STEAM CORPO-
RATION  PURSUANT TO ARTICLE FOUR-A OF THIS CHAPTER, THE COMMISSION SHALL
PROVIDE FOR A MANAGEMENT AND OPERATIONS AUDIT OF THE  STEAM  CORPORATION
IN  THE  TIME  AND  MANNER  SPECIFIED  IN  THIS SECTION. The audit shall
include, but not be  limited  to,  an  investigation  of  the  company's
construction  program,  planning [in relation], SECURITY AND MAINTENANCE
OPERATIONS AS THEY RELATE to the needs of  its  customers  for  reliable
service,  an  evaluation  of the efficiency of the company's operations,
recommendations with respect to same, and the timing with respect to the
implementation of such recommendations.  THE AUDIT SHALL  INCLUDE  INDE-
PENDENT VERIFICATION OF THE INFORMATION PROVIDED BY THE CORPORATION. The

 EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                      [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                           LBD01530-02-4

S. 584--A                           2

commission  shall  have  discretion to have such audits performed by its
staff, or by independent auditors.    UPON  COMPLETION,  COPIES  OF  THE
AUDITS  SHALL  BE PROVIDED TO THE GOVERNOR, SPEAKER OF THE ASSEMBLY, THE
TEMPORARY  PRESIDENT  OF  THE  SENATE,  THE  CHAIR OF THE SENATE FINANCE
COMMITTEE, THE CHAIR OF THE ASSEMBLY WAYS AND MEANS COMMITTEE, THE CHAIR
OF THE ASSEMBLY ENERGY COMMITTEE AND THE CHAIR OF THE SENATE ENERGY  AND
TELECOMMUNICATIONS COMMITTEE.
  In  every  case  in  which  the  commission  chooses to have the audit
provided for in this subdivision or pursuant to subdivision fourteen  of
section sixty-five of this article performed by independent auditors, it
shall  have authority to select the auditors, and to require the company
being audited to enter into a contract with the auditors  providing  for
their  payment  by the company. Such contract shall provide further that
the auditors shall work for and under the direction  of  the  commission
according  to  such  terms as the commission may determine are necessary
and reasonable.
  (c) Upon the application of a gas or electric corporation for a  major
change in rates as defined in subdivision twelve of this section OR OF A
STEAM  CORPORATION FOR A MAJOR CHANGE IN RATES AS DEFINED IN SUBDIVISION
TEN OF SECTION EIGHTY OF THIS CHAPTER, the commission shall review  that
corporation's  compliance  with  the directions and recommendations made
previously by the commission, as a result of the most recently completed
management and operations audit.  The commission shall  incorporate  the
findings of such review in its opinion or order, and such findings shall
be enforceable by the commission.
  S 2. This act shall take effect on the one hundred twentieth day after
it shall have become a law. Provided, that the public service commission
is  immediately  authorized  and  directed  to take any and all actions,
including but not limited to the promulgation of  any  necessary  rules,
necessary to fully implement the provisions of this act on its effective
date.

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