HARRISBURG -The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) today announced a change in date for a special public hearing on alternative energy resources, energy conservation and efficiency, and demand side response (DSR) tools and programs to assist consumers. The previously announced en banc hearing will now be held on Wednesday, Nov. 19, 2008, at 9:30 a.m. in Hearing Room 1 of the Commonwealth Keystone Building in Harrisburg. As announced by the Secretarial Letter on Oct. 3, 2008, this hearing was originally scheduled for Thursday, Nov. 13, 2008.
According to the secretarial letter issued today, due to the overwhelming response from experts who have already wished to testify on these important topics and the effects of Act 129 of 2008 on these issues, the Commission has set aside a full day for the hearing, which allow the Commission to increase the number of interested parties who can provide testimony and ensure that the Commission gathers as much information as possible prior to acting on pending staff recommendations on these complex issues. The hearing will solicit comments from parties on topics in the attached updated list of questions, in addition to any comments on Act 129. As part of the informal en banc hearing process, the five PUC Commissioners will question the speakers after their testimony.
On Oct. 15, 2008, Gov. Ed Rendell signed HB 2200 into law as Act 129 of 2008. The Act expands the Commission’s oversight responsibilities and imposes new requirements on electric distribution companies (EDCs), with the overall goal of reducing energy consumption and demand, enhancing default service procurement and expanding alternative energy sources. In order to comply with the Act in an orderly and efficient manner, the Commission will implement the Act in phases. The first phase will deal with the Commission’s obligation to adopt an energy efficiency and conservation (EE&C) program by Jan. 15, 2009.
The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission balances the needs of consumers and utilities to ensure safe and reliable utility service at reasonable rates; protect the public interest; educate consumers to make independent and informed utility choices; further economic development; and foster new technologies and competitive markets in an environmentally sound manner.
For recent news releases, audio of select Commission proceedings or more information about the PUC, visit our Web site at www.puc.state.pa.us.
Docket No. M-00061984