PUC Issues Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on Proposed Changes to Low-Income Usage Reduction Program Regulations
Published on 5/18/2023
Filed under: Consumer Education Electric Gas
Seeks Public Comment on Proposed Amendments Designed to Improve Operations of Various LIURPs and Maximize Ratepayer Benefits
HARRISBURG – The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) today adopted a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking Order (NOPR) proposing amendments to current regulations for the Low-Income Usage Reduction Program (LIURP) and requesting public comment on the newly proposed regulations.
The Commission voted 5-0 to adopt the NOPR and further advance the PUC’s ongoing review and proposed revisions to the current LIURP regulations at 52 Pa. Code §§ 58.1—58.18 – with PUC staff noting this update to the regulations is important to keep up with the changing energy landscape and technology improvements, to ensure coordination among Commonwealth energy reduction programs, and to ensure fair, effective, and efficient energy usage reductions.
“As the LIURP regulations have not been amended since 1998, now is the appropriate time to revisit our regulations based on the knowledge and experience this Commission, public utilities, customers, and vested partners have gained over the years,” said Commissioner Kathryn L. Zerfuss in a statement at today’s PUC public meeting.
“These proposed amendments are consistent with the Commission’s recent interests in improving coordination and efficiencies within our public utilities’ universal service programs and maximizing the allocated dollars for these programs to the benefit of residential customers.”
On Dec. 16, 2016, the Commission issued an initial Secretarial Letter seeking stakeholder input related to the scope of a proposed rulemaking to update the LIURP regulations. Today’s NOPR summarizes the previous stakeholder comments to the 2016 Secretarial Letter, sets forth the PUC’s proposed amendments, and provides an opportunity for public comments after the NOPR is published in the Pennsylvania Bulletin.
The PUC will provide the NOPR to both the Office of Attorney General (OAG) and to the Governor’s Office of Budget (Budget) for review. Upon approval from OAG and from Budget, the PUC will send the NOPR, along with the requisite supporting documents, to the Legislative Standing Committees, the Independent Regulatory Review Commission, and the Legislative Reference Bureau for publication in the Pennsylvania Bulletin.
Comments will not be due until the NOPR is published in the Pennsylvania Bulletin.
Submitting Written Comments and Reply Comments
Interested parties may submit written comments within 45 days of publication of the PUC’s NOPR in the Pennsylvania Bulletin. At the close of this comment period, interested parties have an opportunity to file written reply comments within 30 days. Both written comments and written reply comments should reference Docket No. L-2016-2557886.
Interested parties submitting written comments and/or written reply comments are encouraged to use the Commission’s electronic filing system. An eFiling account may be opened and used through the Commission’s website.
Interested parties filing hard copies of written comments or written reply comments may do so with the PUC’s Secretary’s Bureau. Individuals not eFiling are required to mail – preferable by overnight delivery – one original filing, signed and dated, with the Commission’s Secretary at:
Rosemary Chiavetta, Secretary
Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission
Commonwealth Keystone Building
400 North Street
Harrisburg, PA 17120
The Commission notes that all pages of filed comments and reply comments, with the exception of a cover letter, must be numbered. Comments and reply comments filed during the public comment period will be forwarded to the appropriate Legislative Standing Committees and the Independent Regulatory Review Commission (IRRC). IRRC will post the comments and reply comments on its website.
Matters relative to the LIURP rulemaking may be viewed and downloaded from the Commission’s website. Contact persons for this proceeding are Regina Carter, PUC Bureau of Consumer Services, at 717-425-5441 or firstname.lastname@example.org; and Karen Thorne, Regulatory Review Assistant, PUC Law Bureau, at email@example.com.
The PUC’s existing LIURP regulations apply to natural gas distribution companies and electric distribution companies. These public utilities are required to include a LIURP as part of their universal service and energy conservation programs. These programs also include Customer Assistance Programs (CAPs), Hardship Funds, and Customer Assistance Referral and Evaluation (CARES) programs.
For recent news releases and video of select Commission proceedings or more information about the PUC, visit our website at www.puc.pa.gov. Follow the PUC on Twitter – @PA_PUC for all things utility. “Like” Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission on Facebook for easy access to information on utility issues.
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Docket No.: L-2016-2557886
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