Comments Regarding Joint Utility Draft Tariffs Establishing Customer Benefit Contribution
June 14, 2021
The July 16, 2020 New York State Public Service Commission (“PSC”) “Order Establishing Net Metering Successor Tariff” (hereafter referred to as the “July Order”) required the state’s investor-owned utilities to submit draft tariff leaves and draft tariff statements related to implementing the newly established Customer Benefit Contribution (“CBC”) charge by November 1, 2020.
On November 2 and 3, Niagara Mohawk Power Corporation, d/b/a National Grid, Central Hudson Gas & Electric Corporation, Orange and Rockland Utilities, Inc., Consolidated Edison Company of New York, Inc., and jointly by New York State Electric & Gas Corporation and Rochester Gas and Electric Corporation (the “Joint Utilities or JU”) filed draft tariff leaves and other documents explaining their proposed CBC calculations. Subsequently, New York State Department of Public Service (“DPS”) staff convened a technical conference on March 25, 2021 to hear an explanation of the JU draft tariff filings and allow parties to ask questions. The JU filed a presentation with the DPS on March 26, 2021 with additional material.
The Clean Energy Parties (“CEP”) appreciate the opportunity to comment on the draft tariffs and calculations per the notice issued May 11, 2021. The CEP have carefully reviewed the JU submissions and offer the following recommendations. Our recommendations and comments fall into two major categories:
1) The CBC is calculated incorrectly. Specifically, the utilities have (a) incorrectly included programs not specified in the July Order, and (b) have failed to account for the contributions that NEM customers make to public benefit programs. These inconsistencies with the July Order affect the calculations across utilities and the size of the charge, and significantly changes the economics for potential solar customers, especially in Consolidated Edison’s service territory.
2) The CEP requests that the New York Public Service Commission (“PSC”) clarifies that the CBC should not be applied to non-residential, demand metered customers given that there is general agreement among the parties that applying this charge would be unnecessary given the underlying rate design.