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Commission Update

January 2017

Julie I. Brown

FPSC Rings in Busy New Year

Looking back at 2016, it is rewarding to see how productive we were and how much we accomplished. The Florida Public Service Commission (FPSC) closed 278 dockets, opened 252 dockets, held 22 customer meetings and hearings across the state, and made many decisions to keep utilities safe and rates stable for Florida's consumers and businesses. I believe 2017 will be an even busier year for the FPSC, and January has already proved that to be true.

Earlier in 2016, two large utilities filed rate case petitions that are keeping our agency busy: Utilities Inc. of Florida (UIF), a water and wastewater utility, and Gulf Power Company (Gulf), an electric utility. As you are aware, when a utility submits a rate change request, as UIF and Gulf did, the FPSC performs an extensive investigation.
The FPSC holds one or more customer hearings within the utility's service area so that Commissioners can hear from the public.
In January and February, the Commission will attend eight customer service hearings in UIF's service territory and two hearings in Gulf's territory to listen to customers' comments about their utility and quality of service. Testimony by utility customers at public hearings is an integral part of utility ratemaking, and we always urge consumers to participate.

The FPSC also conducts a technical hearing for every rate case, where evidence is presented by expert witnesses, who are then cross-examined by the utility, intervenors, FPSC staff, and the Office of Public Counsel. Gulf's technical hearing is scheduled in March and UIF's will be in May. FPSC staff then reviews the record and prepares a recommendation. Commissioners consider the staff's recommendation at a public Commission Conference before making a decision.

The FPSC is hosting Federal Energy Regulatory Commissioner Colette Honorable at its February Internal Affairs meeting to discuss issues of state and federal interest. In March, the FPSC will review the electric investor-owned utilities' (IOU) Electric Distribution Reliability Reports, filed annually on or before March 1. In this filing, each IOU reports the latest available data on its various reliability indices, such as System Average Interruption Duration Index (SAIDI) and System Average Interruption Frequency index (SAIFI). The report also describes the IOU's storm hardening efforts related to 10 ongoing initiatives established by the FPSC. We review these reports to verify the utilities' compliance with FPSC requirements and ensure that Florida's utilities are maintaining quality service that is safe and reliable.

In April, the FPSC will hold a roundtable discussion with executives from each IOU to discuss hurricane preparedness and lessons learned from the past hurricane season. Thereafter, in May, the FPSC will review the storm preparedness plans for the state's electric utilities before the 2017 hurricane season begins. By annually reviewing utilities' adherence to FPSC preparedness rules, we are assured of reduced storm-related outages and quicker recovery times for families and essential services.

Throughout the year, we'll look at ways to continue to increase fuel diversity in case the price of natural gas suddenly spikes. In that regard, the FPSC will hold hedging workshops to evaluate more costeffective ways to insure against rising gas prices.

Every day at the FPSC, we are dedicated to educating Florida's consumers on the constantly changing choices they face. We want consumers to know how to protect themselves and know where to turn if they can't resolve their utility problems on their own. We produce a variety of fact sheets, brochures, and consumer tips to help customers make wise choices about everything from energy and water conservation to reducing utility bills.

We encourage customers to let us know if you have a question or need help with a utility problem. Just call the FPSC at 800-342-3552. Both English and Spanish-speaking analysts are ready to help with any questions or concerns about electric, natural gas, water or wastewater service. I sincerely hope 2017 will be good for all of you!

Julie I. Brown, FPSC Chairman      


Call toll-free number: 800-342-3552
Fax toll-free: 800-511-0809

Send a letter to: The Florida Public Service Commission
2540 Shumard Oak Blvd., Tallahassee, Florida 32399-0850

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February Commission Calendar

2/1 Utilities Inc. of Florida Service Hearings in Leesburg and Clermont
2/2 Utilities Inc. of Florida Service Hearings in Altamonte Springs and Lakeland
2/7 Commission Conference
2/22-2/23 Public Utility Research Center Meetings in Gainesville

January News Releases

PSC Commissioner Brisé Named to FCC’s IAC Committee

Florida PSC Commissioner Donald Polmann Begins Term

PSC Customer Service Hearings for New Port Richey and Zephyrhills

PSC Customer Service Hearings for Punta Gorda and Lake Placid

PSC Report Shows Lifeline Assistance Program Continues to Benefit Florida Consumers

PSC Customer Meeting for Charlie Creek Utilities, LLC.

Pensacola Hair Salon Receives PSC’s Triple E Award

Light of the World Ministries Named a PSC Helping Hand

PSC Customer Service Hearing for Pensacola

PSC Customer Service Hearing for Panama City

PSC Commissioner Brisé Named to NARUC’s Executive Committee

PSC Customer Service Hearings for Leesburg and Clermont

PSC Customer Service Hearings for Altamonte Springs and Lakeland

December / January Notable FPSC Dockets

Electric Industry
Docket No. 20160251
12/29/2016   -   Petition for limited proceeding for recovery of incremental storm restoration costs related to Hurricane Matthew by Florida Power & Light Company.

Docket No. 20170014
01/10/2017   -   Petition for approval of ENERGY STAR program for new multi-family residences, by Tampa Electric Company.

Gas Industry
Docket No. 20170010
01/03/2017   -   Joint petition requesting approval of territorial agreement for Escambia County, by City of Pensacola d/b/a Pensacola Energy and Florida Division of Chesapeake Utilities Corporation.

Telecommunications Industry
Docket No. 20160249
12/27/2016   -   Request for approval of interconnection, unbundling, resale, and collocation agreement between Frontier Florida LLC and TampaBay DSL Inc d/b/a PBX-Change.

Water and Wastewater Industry
Docket No. 20170006
01/03/2017   -   Water and wastewater industry annual reestablishment of authorized range of return on common equity for water and wastewater utilities pursuant to Section 367.081(4)(f), F.S.

December / January Notable FPSC Orders

Electric Industry
Order No. PSC-2016-0582-PCO-EI   ♦ Docket No:   20160186
12/28/2016   -   Order PSC-16-0582-PCO-EI suspending GPC's request for $106,782,000 permanent base rate increase and its associated tariff revisions in order to allow staff and any intervenor sufficient time to adequately and thoroughly examine whether the request for permanent rate relief is appropriate; dockets to remain open pending staff's final determination in this matter.

Order No. PSC-2017-0022-CO-EI   ♦ Docket No:   20160106
01/12/2017   -   Consummating Order PSC-17-0022-CO-EI makes Order PSC-16-0570-PAA-EI effective and final; docket shall be closed.

Order No. PSC-2017-0023-CO-EI   ♦ Docket No:   20160105
01/12/2017   -   Consummating Order PSC-17-0023-CO-EI makes Order PSC-16-0569-PAA-EI effective and final; docket shall be closed.

Order No. PSC-2017-0024-CO-EI   ♦ Docket No:   20160108
01/12/2017   -   Consummating Order PSC-17-0024-CO-EI makes Order PSC-16-0572-PAA-EI effective and final; docket shall be closed.

Order No. PSC-2017-0025-CO-EI   ♦ Docket No:   20160107
01/12/2017   -   Consummating Order PSC-17-0025-CO-EI makes Order PSC-16-0571-PAA-EI effective and final; docket shall be closed.

Telecommunications Industry
Order No. PSC-2016-0586-FOF-TC   ♦ Docket No:   20160230
12/30/2016   -   Order PSC-16-0586-FOF-TC cancelling PATS Certificate No. 8802, effective 10/28/16; closes docket.

Water and Wastewater Industry
Order No. PSC-2016-0583-PAA-WS   ♦ Docket No:   20150010
12/29/2016   -   PAA Order PSC-16-0583-PAA-WS approving Aquarina's rates; and final order granting temporary rates in the event of a protest; if no protest, a CO will be issued; if CO issued, PAA Order will be final and effective; docket to be closed administratively on staff's verification that the outstanding Phase I pro forma items have been completed, the revised tariff sheets and customer notice have been filed by Aquarina and approved by staff; protest due 1/19/17.

Order No. PSC-2017-0014-CO-WS   ♦ Docket No:   20160005
01/04/2017   -   Consummating Order PSC-17-0014-CO-WS makes Order PSC-16-0552-PAA-WS effective and final; docket shall be closed.

Water Industry
Order No. PSC-2016-0584-FOF-WU   ♦ Docket No:   20160130
12/29/2016   -   Order PSC-16-0584-FOF-WU acknowledging transfer to a governmental authority and cancelling Certificate No. 644-W, effective 5/15/16; closes docket.